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This session will be presented with live event captioning (CART).
Tar Swan is a multi-voiced reckoning that surveys the mythos of the Alberta oil sands with an approach that is both lyrical and experimental. The poems feature four voices: an oil sands developer (in public and in private), his plant mechanic, an archeologist excavating the remains of the operation years later, and a mythical swan. David Martin’s debut collection is comprised of expansive and richly written poems, built on a lore-laden language, which explore the human and environmental cost of drawing too much from the land. As the three humans come into contact with the otherworldly swan, the voices bubble and churn together, and what is distilled is the human psychological breakdown paralleling the violence done to the earth.
David Martin was born and raised in Calgary, where he lives with his wife and children. His poetry has been awarded the CBC Poetry Prize, shortlisted for the Vallum Award for Poetry and PRISM international‘s poetry contest, and published in many journals and magazines across Canada. He is an instructor at The Reading Foundation, one of the organizers for Calgary’s Single Onion poetry reading series, and the frontman for an indie-pop group, The Fragments. His debut book, Tar Swan, is a part of the Crow Said Poetry series.