Page 37 - High Praise for Wild Honey: A New Book of 45 Poems by Aaron Schneider
ISSUE : Issue 74
Published by Ronald Caplan on 1999/6/1
just in time to see another bear going ninety miles an hour in the other direction. He must have come up behind us and dis? covered us just before we got up. For the rest of the afternoon our heads were on swivels as we walked along, lest we get too close to them unawares, or sur? prise one that might be lying down in a depression in the heath. We saw three more before leaving that day Our thanks to Clarence Bar? rett, Park Warden in the Cape Breton Highlands Na? tional Park. High Praise for Wild Honey A New Book of 45 Poems by Aaron Schneider You'd think it is difficult enough to write poetry. But It is also difficult to get poetry published. It is always a hard sell • hard to convince the stores to give those books shelf space. And hard to get a book of poetry reviewed • that might be the toughest of all. Wild Honey is a success all around. Breton Books was delighted to publish Wild Honey because it's a terrific book. Stores that never had poetry under their roofs are now offering Wild Honey. And reviews have appeared in several newspapers, consistently offering high praise. Frank Macdonald wrote in the Inverness Oran: "Schneider's poetry reflects what people know of his life in Cape Breton, that he is committed to encouraging respect for our precious and ever- threatened environment.... The theme moves through Wild Honey like a melody wiring a diversity of poems to rock-solid values." Charlotte Musial in the Cape Breton Post declared it "a rich- I ly textured and appealing work | at the heart of which lives an abiding esteem for the world around us. Wild Honey is a worthy addition to any readers' bookshelf." And George Elliott Clarke in the Halifax Sunday Herald called Wild Honey "a wonderful | feast of words. Schneider is a Cape Breton original...nature is | an awesomely grandiose pres? ence in his poetry. It is as ma? jestic as the black bear that strides across the cover.... (Wild Honey's) lyrics hum with down-home speech.... Breath? taking.... Schneider is, in the end, a marvelous poet." Finally, as the proud publisher, i want to add that the practise of art is a rare and private un? dertaking. I am grateful to bear witness wherever I can, espe? cially grateful for the opportu? nity to share it with the wider audience that Wild Honey un? doubtedly deserves. • Ronald Caplan { Published by Breton Books, Wild Honey is on sale every? where, or direct from Cape Bre- | ton's Magazine, for $9.95. See pages 76-77. Aaron bchn Wild Honey In spring when the honey flows in dandelion and lilac, apple and violet, I tack a screen cage like my fist around a cap I fill with last year's honey, leave a door in it for the honey hungry, and carry it up on the mountain to the woods, and sit in the new green of maple, watch the hickory swell and burst through its flowering cherry bud and wait for a single bee to find me from a distance 1 cannot hear. land loudly on my open lure, find the cup and fill itself heavy on its wings and lumber a line toward home. I watch him disappear, and fix the spot and go there to wait for another to read the drunken dance of surfeit, the shake and beat, the loop and line, this way, this way, not far, brothers, fly as I dance. Not long and a second cuts its engine on my fist and climbs in. This time I close the door and carry him a long way on the line, deeper to the heart of the bee home, release him and watch his line, and run now, like the honey dance, leaping and dodging, this way, this way, deeper and lose it, drop panting in the old leaves, like the trillium and pulpits and wait for the hum of more bees to trap and carry as far as I can reckon, and run again following the honey jive, the bump and lurch, again and again until shred shirted and scratch sided. sweat burning my eyes like bright pollens so I am running by sound alone, learning the dance at last, I come home to the loudness of myriads of bees, the hive tree, terminal and source, politic of comings and goings. 1 am the bandit enemy of the state. if it knew how well I will mark this place to return in winter while they lie imbedded in their frozen honeyed sleep. 1 will come in snow and ice with bucket, knife, and saw. climb up and saw out a block, hack it free and cut out the naked hive, cut away the amber candy sheets and leave them in the snow, honey numb, to freeze and die. In my dark bear, honey laden sleep, I dream how the bees will smell me out, lured to the golden crystals on my beard and fly back dancing for their brothers until they all come and cover me bristling and buzzing like a blanket and eat the honey from my cloyed lips. my drowsy drunken flesh, tear the wings from my eyes, fill me like a hive, with a spring swarm. with a new queen. 849-4505 16 Resen/eSL* GLACE BAY V, % McQiCCivray JumrdOiomes FUNERAL DIRECTORS & EMBALMERS Established Since 1938 Complete Funeral Arrangements, Including Pre-Arranged Funeral Services All Pre Paid Funeral Accounts Are Deposited "In Trust" In a Canadian Trust Company 862-6439 380 Smith St • NEW WATERFORD. 37
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