Finns and Amazons
by Nancy Mattson
Published February 2012
£8.99 post free in UK.
Nancy Mattson was born and raised in Canada but has lived in London, England, since 1990. Both her first collection, Maria Breaks her Silence (1989) – shortlisted for the Gerald Lampert Memorial Award – and her second, Writing with Mercury (2006), explore memory, myth and history, coloured by her Finnish background. Finns and Amazons is her third full collection.
Nancy Mattson explores her family's complex history vividly but with a clear and honest understanding of how much must always remain unknowable. This imbues these sometimes tragic poems about Canada and the Soviet Union with a liberating sense of openness.
Virginia Woolf points out that as women writers we think back through our fore-mothers, the female line. And in Finns and Amazons Nancy Mattson thinks back. This rich and moving book explores the turmoil of the twentieth century as it affects the individual and those who, much later, look back, piecing together clues, retrieving what has survived.
These poems have clarity and poise, conveying the power and fortitude of women as ‘Amazons’ , ensuring that one such woman who vanished into history did not disappear without leaving a trace, but is given record and honour. This is a true task of poetry, and it shines from these pages where we find the ‘simultané’ of life, one powerfully-articulated thread in the brutal tapestry of the twentieth century.
Copyright © 2012 Arrowhead Press
Last modified: 12 February 2012