Looking Through Stone: Poems about the Earth by Susan Ioannou
In a breathtaking display of erudition, craft, and attention, award-winning poet Susan Ioannou explores how our humanity has been crafted by our ancient relationship with the world of rocks, metals, gemstones, and mining. From the subatomic to the cosmic, from the lab to the lyre, she ranges across the continuum of being of which our humanity is but a part. This book is unique.
“Science analyses, and art creates metaphors. Ultimately, by combining the two points of view, I hope to have written poems that are both solid and beautiful.” —from the author’s Preface
“Ancient wisdom emphasizes that there’s no rigid divide between animate and inanimate. . . . Susan Ioannou’s poetry grows out of such wisdom. . . . She draws metallurgy and love-story, geology and tragedy, towards each other. . . . In her poems, words themselves are drawn towards the qualities of stones and gems. Their sound is often hard, smooth, fibrous, thick, chipped. Her poems give the impression of growing, line by line, as crystal structures might, into networks of shining lattices. Her whole book has an overall architecture, into which individual poems fit. The episodic and lyrical sparkle as part of an extended and thoughtful treatment of the poetics of geology.”—Roger Nash, former President of the League of Canadian Poets
"The mining sector should embrace this collection of poetry, which shows the industry from a different and enlightening perspective, as its own."—Peter McBride, Ontario Mining Association Newsletter (read the review here)
"'I don't think this book will teach geologists anything,' said Susan Ioannou of her work. She is wrong. It will, and a great deal too."—Andrew Linder, Sudbury Mining Solutions
"Susan Ioannou has accomplished much more than simply combining mysticism, geology, mineralogy and poetry. She has managed to take all of those things and blend them with scientific facts which go beyond mere amateur observations, with history and myths which are surprising and enlightening, and with passion and beauty, which draws the reader eagerly onward for the next poem."—Adge Covell, Miner's Advice (read the review here)
ISBN 1-896350-22-4, 978-1-896350-22-6
Poem - Mineralogy Lesson
Hear Susan reading from Looking Through Stone on the Authors Aloud Web site.
About the Author
Susan Ioannou of Toronto first became interested in geology as a theme while her son was completing a PhD. Exploring the science of rocks and minerals from a poet’s perspective was a fascinating and refreshing change from writing personal lyrics. Ioannou's fiction, articles, and poetry have appeared across Canada. Winner of the 1997 Okanagan Short Story Award and twice a finalist in the CBC Literary Awards, in 2002/2003 she received an Ontario Arts Council Works in Progress grant to complete Looking Through Stone. Her other books include Clarity Between Clouds (Goose Lane Editions 086492111X), Where the Light Waits (Ekstasis Editions 0921215967), and Coming Home (Leaf Press), the children’s novel A Real Farm Girl (Hodgepog Books), and the handbook A Magical Clockwork: The Art of Writing the Poem (Wordwrights Canada 978-0-920835-12-0). She is a member of the League of Canadian Poets, and a past Associate Editor of Cross-Canada Writers' Quarterly/ Magazine.