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Brilliant Falls by John Terpstra

One poem in John Terpstra’s latest collection, Brilliant Falls, is the story of a “holy raving protester” who climbed a tree to oppose the building of a highway. The poem begins with the often-quoted first verses of Revelation 21. However, the whole collection demonstrates Terpstra’s brilliant ability to see the “new heaven and the new earth”… Continue reading Brilliant Falls by John Terpstra

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A Morning Return to Alden Nowlan

This summer I have revisited several beloved Canadian authors. It started out as an unintentional pattern--a series of readings prompted by online articles or books that happened to be on my coffee table. But it is a trend I am happy to continue, because these have been richly enjoyable works to reread. Over breakfast this… Continue reading A Morning Return to Alden Nowlan

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Why Alistair MacLeod is a Master

One of my former English professors recently wrote a brief reflection in The Globe and Mail in response to the question "What is your favourite book to teach?" His answer? The Lost Salt Gift of Blood, a short story collection by Alistair MacLeod. It just so happens that this was also my favourite book to study in… Continue reading Why Alistair MacLeod is a Master

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Patrick Lane and Finding a Place for Beauty

For years now, Canadian author Patrick Lane--a poet, novelist, and memoirist--has been one of my favourite writers. I first discovered him in university, when he visited to give a reading. I also had the pleasure of hearing him and his wife, Lorna Crozier, read in Hamilton at a LitLive event a couple of years ago. (You can read… Continue reading Patrick Lane and Finding a Place for Beauty

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Alice Munro’s Christian Periphery

I often find it difficult to reflect on literary masters in just a few hundred words. Throw religious faith into the mix and you have a whole lot of idea wrangling (in my case, usually late into the night). Somehow, though, I managed cobble together a few thoughts on Alice Munro's treatment of Christianity in… Continue reading Alice Munro’s Christian Periphery

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My recent writing on reading

Realized today that my recent online pieces all speak to the joy and guidance that literature has been in my life. I am so grateful for the brilliant and beautiful work of authors out there, from local writers to classic spiritual thinkers to the novelists I read in my youth. Here's some of my recent… Continue reading My recent writing on reading