In his third collection of poetry, The Grammar of Distance, Ian Burgham writes from his gut and his heart. His imagery is, by turns, sensuous and rough-hewn, soft and hard. The poems crackle with sonic energy; they whinny and stamp. They whistle in the dark. His poetic landscapes frequent the windswept coasts of Scotland; but in this collection, we also find him doing terribly Canadian things like snowshoeing, surveying, chopping wood. Sometimes Al Purdy can be heard in Burgham’s voice and, occasionally, Patrick Lane. His penchant for storytelling and Celtic elegiac moods makes him a solid candidate for the position of poetic counterpart to Alistair MacLeod. Like all strong poets, Burgham’s imagination breaks past borders. Tribal and intense, his poems are conversations with loved ones, lost ones, and all the poets with storms in their bones. They are feisty. They rant. They grieve. They celebrate. Burgham is a thinker, a philosophical poet, a restless soul who asks big questions.
--- from the publisher
About the Author:
Ian Burgham is an associate of the League of Canadian Poets. In 2004 he won the Queen’s University Well-Versed Poetry Prize. He is a graduate of both Queen’s University and the University of Edinburgh, and has lived for extended periods in various parts of the world. He served as a senior editor at Canongate Publishing in Edinburgh during the early 1980s. His poems have been published in a number of literary journals and magazines including dANDelion, Queen’s Quarterly, Scottish Arts Journal, Harpweaver, and the Literary Review of Canada. Burgham has had one poetry book published in the United Kingdom: Confession of Birds, (2003 chapbook). His first full collection of poems, The Stone Skippers, will be published in Australia and New Zealand by Sunline Press, Perth (introduction by Newcastle Prize winning poet, Roland Leach) and, in the UK by MacLean Dubois Publishers in February 2007 (Introduction by novelist and poet, Alexander McCall Smith). He is currently working on his third collection. Ian works as a volunteer to further the efforts of the Griffin Prize for Excellence in Poetry. He is an adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of Family Medicine at Queen’s University.