Tomorrow is a Holiday by Hamish Ballantyne

Tomorrow is a Holiday

  • Poetry
  • 104 pages, 6×9 inches
  • Price: $16 CAD · $16 USD
  • ISBN: 9781554202089
  • Date published: 2024-04-11
  • Availability: in print & available


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About Tomorrow is a Holiday

In Tomorrow is a Holiday, Hamish Ballantyne resists the urge of revelation in favour of idiomatic observations.
Divided in four parts, the last of which draws on translations of San Juan de la Cruz, these poems sit by the ocean or by the felled spruce, from within the tent on the mountain or on city streets, and Ballantyne serves as a narrator at the margins of it all. The curious restlessness of a poet's eye settling on the world, but there is much in the field of view and these deceptively simple scenes give way to exquisite sensitivity.

‘List of poets I like who have written about Machu Picchu: Hamish Ballantyne. Hamish’s poems are written in tents, they find language rooted under trees - not the mother tree but the mother of all class wars. Don’t confuse the Rosy Brittlegill with other russulas: these poems are edible but they will poison you. The war of the woods. Now you’re logrolling!’
-- Clint Burnham, author of The Goldberg Variations

‘Shivers of mood—now blunt, now gleaming—pierce and puzzle Tomorrow is a Holiday. Set in a landscape of community centres and encampments, canneries and processing plants, A&Ws and Tim Hortons, under “billboards advertising billboard space,” or as a transposition of St. John of the Cross into the precarious noir of the now, these crystalline sequences give way to affinities that resist what the “imagination a parasite swimming in memory / makes / of the past.” ’
— Roberto Tejada, author of Why the Assembly Disbanded

With clairvoyant energy, the serial poems in Tomorrow is a Holiday expand rapidly to indicate individual lives inside the paranormal pressures of language. The lyric momentum of this four-poem sequence channels daily events in Vancouver, where lyric subjectivities expand by a reception of voices at ground level. Here, people sleep for a “month in the pub parking lot,” and in dreamlike privation are “always short of revelatory / but a constant stream thereof.” Hamish Ballantyne’s sympathy for a public world and his sensitivity to the phantom exigencies of language help us come awake to poetry’s disclosure of spiritual realities, “deserted first by reason then / the sandstorm of experience.” This book is on the street, in the heart and ear. It’s beautiful.
— Dale Smith, author of Slow Poetry in America

About Hamish Ballantyne

Hamish Ballantyne is a poet and translator based on the unceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh peoples (Vancouver, Canada). He works in the Downtown Eastside and as a commercial mushroom picker. Ballantyne has published two chapbooks, Imitation Crab (Knife/Fork/Book, 2020) and Blue Knight (Auric Press, 2022). Tomorrow is a Holiday is his first full length collection.

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