Certifiable

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Goose Lane Editions, 2001 - Poetry - 100 pages
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Toronto writer Pamela Mordecai is a well-known voice in the poetry of the Caribbean diaspora. She has long been a popular anthologist, a mentor to other writers, a frequent contributor to literary journals, and a vital link between the literary worlds of Canada and Jamaica. Certifiable presents a maturing vision of women's lives in both of her homes. Certifiable celebrates experience shot through with affection, family attachment, and madness. The poems in the first section, "Just a Likl Loving," explore the truths hidden beneath the ideal of love: love as comfort, love as currency, love as deathtrap. "Sister Sequence" embraces the fullness of sisterhood, from the conceptual "sister muse" as a power in the world to the ambivalent love among flesh-and-blood sisters. "Certifiable," the final section, springs from intimacy with little and big madnesses. At the head of each. The rhythms and rhymes of the creole soundscape crackle through Certifiable. Mordecai's deft hand wordplay flows through and beyond standard English and the creole continuum to reveal the characters in Certifiable and record their experiences.

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Contents

JUS A LIKL LOVIN
9
Tell
11
Poems Grow
13
Shooting the Horses
15
Dust
17
Convent Girl
19
To No Music
21
Sky Jazz
23
Jus a Likl Dovin
41
MY SISTER MUSE
45
Elizabeth
47
My sister muse
49
My sister takes over
51
My sister gets married
53
My sister cries the
56
My sister Gloria
57

Caliban Calypso or Original
28
Wills Flowers
32
That Time of Year
34
Lottery
36
Deadly Beauties
38
My two sisters take a bath
60
My sister
65
My sister goes
68
Copyright

About the author (2001)

Toronto writer Pamela Mordecai is also an editor, publisher, teacher, actor, and former TV presenter. A veteran anthologist, she co-edited the ground-breaking collections Jamaica Woman and Her True-True Name, the first collection of fiction by women from English-, French-, and Spanish-speaking Caribbean countries. In 1993 her book Ezra's Goldfish and Other Storypoems was the first winner of the Vic Reid Award, Jamaica's top literary prize for children's literature. She has published two earlier poetry collections, Journey Poem and de Man. Her poems have been selected for numerous anthologies, including The Penguin Book of Caribbean Verse, The Heinemann Anthology of Caribbean Poetry, Eyeing the North Star, Sisters of Caliban, and Wheel and Come Again. Poems from Certifiable have appeared in Descant, Callaloo, The Literary Review, Obsidian, Macomere and other literary journals in Canada, Jamaica, the US, Germany, and England.

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