Against the Hard Angle

Matt Robinson (ECW)

This fourth collection from Halifax-based Robinson is divided into two sections, "What the Rest of Us Would Call Falling" and "Toeing the Slack-Roped Narrows." The first half then divides into three parts and the first of those, "Against the Hard Angle," won the Malahat Review long poem contest in 2009. All this dividing and subdividing of the external reflects a problem with the internal: walls remain standing to separate the reader from the writer, his experience. The metaphors (tools, the kitchen sink, utensils, spoiled milk and so on) hint at a house divided, a measure of a relationship's end, but they don't resolve as ideas, emotions. They remain, more than anything, images not quite fully illuminated, written with a deadened tone. The second half livens the book with a series of lyric poems on reconciling with home, landmarks such as the bridges, Public Gardens, grain elevators, and particularly the organized chaos we all live with in our city.

Support The Coast

At a time when the city needs local coverage more than ever, we’re asking for your help to support independent journalism. We are committed as always to providing free access to readers, particularly as we confront the impact of COVID-19 in Halifax and beyond.

Read more about the work we do here, or consider making a donation. Thank you for your support!

Comments (0)

Add a comment

Add a Comment

Get more Halifax

Our Thursday email gets you caught up with The Coast. Sign up and go deep on Halifax.