Breaking things apart and putting them back together: ekphrastic poetry
University of New Brunswick
“Breaking Things Apart and Putting Them Back Together” is an ekphrastic poetry collection composed of forty-nine poems, as well as a critical introduction. It deals with paintings from artists on the East Coast of Canada such as Mary Pratt, Harold Cromwell, Maud Lewis, and Molly Lamb Bobak; these fours artists are discussed at length in the critical introduction that explores the creative and theoretical framework of ekphrasis. I reimagine ekphrasis as a collaborative art, through which I try to understand life on the East Coast, finding within the range of artists I examined thematic and technical similarities, as well as a general folk sensibility; many artists illustrated landscapes suggesting a consistent creative connection with the land they lived on. While the images gesture outward to viewers, the poems I wrote about them are often introspective, dealing with issues of home, community, culture, and mental health.