In this, her debut collection, Ingrid Ruthig records the ebb and flow of individual life through time, landscape, and our collective existence. How we connect with the past, where we are now, and desp
In this, her debut collection, Ingrid Ruthig records the ebb and flow of individual life through time, landscape, and our collective existence. How we connect with the past, where we are now, and despite our inherent separateness, our personal convergences — these are what lay ahead on this journey. Ruthig also explores our need to create, to build a deeper sense of self, of belonging: questioning, observing, then striving to respond. Her voice is confident, concentrated, wry. This is a book of poems about the dynamic of being, and our shifting perception of who we are from one moment to the next.
View Biographical note
Earned a Bachelor of Architecture at the University of Toronto in the 1980s and practised the profession for more than a decade. Her work as a writer, editor and artist has appeared widely, with poems published in The Best Canadian Poetry in English, The Malahat Review, Descant, and many other journals and anthologies across Canada and abroad. She is the author of the poem sequence & artist's book Slipstream, the chapbook Synesthete II, and editor of The Essential Anne Wilkinson and Richard Outram: Essays on His Works, as well as a forthcoming volume on the work of David Helwig. She lives near Toronto.
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"To use words from Doorway, one of the most enigmatic of Ruthig's poems, her subjects frequently involve the "were" inside the "are, or the thin/now of between". Her architectural training and practice may coincide with the clarity, concision and visual richness of her poems, but the poems are also invested with metaphysical and emotional ambiguities. She has a baroque sense of fluidity, transience and riddling premonition. She is fascinated by the askew, the slant, the unknown country which is a continuously receding destination. Ruthig's is a poetry of very high ability and intelligence."
— Peter Sanger
, author of Aiken Drum
and poetry editor of The Antigonish Review
"Ingrid Ruthig's poems make possible, as the American poet James Dickey would have it, "the deepest kind of personal possession of the world." On offer are long views, in which "not glancing behind us... We just go on," as well as intimate observations of ordinary life; noting that skin is an organ that "shifts across sleep's dunes," or that a childhood caper with siblings is forever bound to "shared corners of sight." Accomplished in both energetic and elegiac tonalities, Ruthig's melodious lines and enjambments offer visually-rich detail and faith in living, despite the "headstrong, outbound current." While they recuperate and celebrate nature and attachments, these poems manage a philosophical eye that is a rare delight in a début collection."
— Nyla Matuk, author of Sumptuary Laws
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Winner of the League of Canadian Poets' 2017 Gerald Lampert Memorial Award for the best first book of poetry published by a Canadian.
From the jury:
"Formally elegant, Ruthig's poetry is smooth and reflects an impeccable ear. Ruthig picks up an idea and unspools it to its end with precision and calmness. This is a book that took its time to be made and for its performance, being consistently excellent from front to back. Her poems read as sonic and 'sombre supplicant to the whims/ of living, age, genetics, and weather' fashioned into a 'stronghold of I.'"