978-0-88982-307-5 / 80pp / $17.95
Susan Telfer’s intense poems in Ghost Town are possessed of a wild brilliance all their own. There is a raw, unruly, exhumed energy coming to the surface of these poems, which is the source of their power. This book’s themes are identity, a struggle for self, invention and re-invention, against the undertow of family dysfunction, of ancestral influences, of grief and loss. They are rooted in the west coast, explicitly located on the fault line as well as in dreams. Sometimes poetic forms offer the only way a story can be told.
“In the poem ‘Helicopter,’ Telfer writes, ‘The ropes round my ankle were cut by knives and I burst to the surface of my life.’ The best poems in this book think through the eviscerating and liberatory conditions of our most profound human relationships. Telfer looks at the creatures around her with a politic of love—love as attention, as revelatory force—amid the precariousness of the world.” ~ Gillian Jerome