If there’s one thing you’ll find in a bookstore it’s connections…like the one made here
in Thea’s Books and Violins in Peterborough. I’m in town to do a literary audit of the region, and what a delightful segue from my recent trip to Wales the owner provided.
Turns out his father, just like Dylan Thomas’s father, read Shakespeare to him at an early age, instilling in him a life long love of poetry. Bill gave me a copy of “A Book Lover’s Guide, Antiquarian, Rare & Out of Print Books in the Kawarthas…Peterborough, Lakefield, Cavan” and as warm a welcome to the area as anyone could wish for. Reminded me of the time I arrived in Dublin late one night. Cutting through a darkened park on the way to my hotel I encountered an old man lying on the grass. As I walked past him he raised himself up and exclaimed ‘Welcome to Dublin!’ the last thing I’d expected to hear. Set the tone for the entire trip.
Thea’s is a lovely tight mess of a shop. Just the way I like it. Lots of interesting older titles. I found this one, Shapes & Sounds, Poems of W. W. E. Ross.
Ross was born in Peterborough in 1894 and is credited as Canada’s leading Imagist of the time, taking as his subject matter the Canadian landscape – birds and trees and such – describing them in short lines, with direct diction, movement, clear images…interesting that one of the world’s great Ezra Pound scholars, Hugh Kenner, also hailed from Peterborough.
Stay tuned for some short-lined direct, clear diction as I attempt to paint the literary landscape of Peterborough and the Kawarthas in the coming days and weeks.