Saturday, April 12, 2008
Hockey vs. Poetry?
And now for something completely different... anyone who knows me knows how much I love hockey. Um, that would be, not very much at all. But, one of the great Canadian pastimes is hockey. Could the other great pastime become the reading aloud of poetry on Poetry Night in Canada, or even the writing of poetry out in the backyard? Could these two pastimes mesh?
Well, Randall Maggs might prove it to you. He meshes the two; a biography of Terry Sawchuk the hockey player as told by a poet, in Night Work : The Sawchuk Poems, (published by poetry press Brick Books) This was launched recently at the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto. There's even been a video made about Sawchuk and this set of poems, over at BookShorts. If you're a hockey fan, take a look.
(ps - I swear I am not talking about this because Sawchuk was Ukrainian! Really!)
Denied the leap and dash up the ice,
what goalies know is side to side, an inwardness of monk
and cell. They scrape. They sweep. Their eyes are elsewhere
as they contemplate their narrow place. Like saints, they pray for nothing,
which brings grace. Off-days, what they want is space. They sit apart
in bars. They know the length of streets in twenty cities.
But it’s their saving sense of irony that further
isolates them as it saves.
– excerpt from "One of You"