Soft Geography

Gillian Wigmore

“What a wonderful, fresh voice Gillian Wigmore brings to the page. These wise poems know the push and pull within family. They reveal the tender truths behind the rough edges of small-town life. Her voice resonates with authenticity, and whether she is writing about a near drowning or ice fishing, she is ultimately writing about the complications of love. These are poems you will not soon forget.”

—Robert Hilles, Governor General’s Award-winner for Poetry

[Wigmore] goes after small moments with clear eyes; of course there’s the occasional Big Move, but the poems keep ending small, precisely small, and I’m jealous about her skill.
The characters speaking here aren’t all the same, so it’s not a question of her having found a voice that works (confessionally, for example) and ridden it until the legs fell off. No, she’s worked her craft relentlessly, and the result has been tremendous flexibility in the narrative or lyric voice. These voices share an eye for small things (a knitter’s arthritic hands, a camper’s presumption that a tent muffles all sounds) and a sense of enmeshedness in the worlds around us (social, ecological, familial, etc), but they come out sounding different.

Won the ReLit Prize for Poetry in 2008

Nominated for the Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize in 2008

Marita Dachsel interviews Gillian Wigmore about writing and motherhood