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Russell Thornton gets a GG Nomination


Posted: Wednesday, October 2, 2013 at 5:32pm

Russell Thornton's lastest collection, Birds, Metals, Stones and Rain is a finalist for one of Canada’s most prestigious literary prizes—the Governor General’s Literary Award for Poetry.

Birds, Metals, Stones and Rain is an intensely personal collection that explores human relationships through images of two worlds: the natural and the urban industrial. A scavenger alley crow is the universal creative spirit in brutal primordial disguise. A murderously violent father and son are integrated into a single new man who walks “bright as a song in the air.” Simple grass is the iron of an invisible forging within nature that involves the human creative consciousness. A young daughter flings up her arms to seagulls that “collect up the world, opening it like a door.” Birds, Metals, Stones and Rain reveals how essential human identity reinitiates human consciousness in a participatory universe.

Russell Thornton’s books include the Fifth Window, A Tunisian Notebook, House Built of Rain (shortlisted for the BC Book Prizes’ Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize and the ReLit Award for poetry) and The Human Shore. He won the League of Canadian Poets National Contest in 2000 and The Fiddlehead’s Ralph Gustafson Poetry Prize in 2009. His poetry has appeared in several anthologies, among them Rocksalt: An Anthology of Contemporary BC Poetry, Open Wide a Wilderness: Canadian Nature Poems, The Montreal International Poetry Prize 2011 Anthology, and Best Canadian Poetry in English 2012. His poems are currently being been featured on Vancouver buses as part of BC’s Poetry in Transit. For several years he divided his life between Vancouver and Aberystwyth, Wales, and then Salonica, Greece. For the past number of years he has lived where he was born and raised—North Vancouver.

The Governor General’s Awards celebrate the best in Canadian Literature. There are seven categories for both English books and French Books. The other finalists in the English poetry category are Where the Sun Shines Best, by Austin Clarke; The Polymers by Adam Dickinson, Bite Down Little Whisper by Don Domanski and North End Love Songs by Katherena Vermette. His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada, will present the 2013 GG Literary Awards on Thursday, November 28 at 6 pm at Rideau Hall, in Ottawa.