Inventory

Publisher: McClelland & Stewart
In Dionne Brand’s incantatory, deeply engaged, beautifully crafted long poem, the question is asked, What would an inventory of the tumultuous early years of this new century have to account for? Alert to the upheavals that mark those years, Brand bears powerful witness to the seemingly unending wars, the ascendance of fundamentalisms, the nameless casualties that bloom out from near and distant streets. An inventory in form and substance, Brand’s poem reckons with the revolutionary songs left to fragment, the postmodern cities drowned and blistering, the devastation flickering across TV screens grown rhythmic and predictable. Inventory is an urgent and burning lamentation.

READ AN EXCERPT

II

Observed over Miami, the city, an orange slick blister,
the houses, stiff-­haired organisms clamped to the earth,
engorged with oil and wheat,
rubber and metals,
the total contents of the brain, the electrical
regions of the atmosphere, water

coming north, reeling, a neurosis of hinged...
Read More

PRAISE FOR

Inventory is damning without being superior, sorrowful without falling into self-pity, joyful without becoming naive. . . . Thought-provoking. . . .What makes Inventory even more powerful, and hard to put down, is Brand’s willingness to match the strength of these desolate lists with a strength of music, dream and intimate feeling.”
Globe and Mail

“You don’t read Dionne Brand, you hear her.”
Toronto Life