Saturday, September 13, 2008

Poiema: A New Poetry Collection — Martin

It’s here! All the years of hard work have finally been rewarded! Poiema (Poy-emma), my first full-length book of poetry has just come off the presses at Wipf & Stock in Eugene, Oregon. If I’d known how long it would take, and how much of me it would take, would I have persisted through all of these years? Perhaps I would have opted for something easier. God knows my weaknesses and has kept this goal just out of reach, on the ever-receding horizon, and that has kept me striving. Now it is here!

The title Poiema is the Greek word in Ephesians 2:10 that is often translated workmanship. Another way the verse could be translated is: We are God’s poem. This says so much about us and our world, and is an insight that fits well with much of what I seek to capture in my poetry.

You’ve got to be stubborn to be a poet, or you’ll never stick with it through the rejection and marginalisation. I easily have enough rejection slips from publications and publishers to wallpaper. That’s because publication is very much about having the right piece in the right place at the right time. You’ve got to be arrogant too — arrogant enough to believe that despite it all you have something to say, and the ability to say it well. On the other hand, I must also say that for me, poetry is a calling — something I have been prepared to do through nature, nurture, inclination, inspiration and perspiration.

Of the poems in this collection the earliest was published in Radix (Berkeley, California) back in 1992 — although I did have poems published earlier, that have not been included. Since that time my poems have appeared in dozens of magazines, including secular Canadian literary journals such as: Arc, Canadian Literature, Dalhousie Review, The Fiddlehead and Queen’s Quarterly; and American publications with a Christian slant such as: The Christian Century, Christianity & Literature, The Cresset, First Things, and Mars Hill Review.

In March 2007 Rubicon Press (Edmonton, Alberta) published my first chapbook, So The Moon Would Not Be Swallowed — a collection of fifteen poems about my grandparents who had been missionaries in China between 1923 and 1951. That step certainly helped to open doors, and prepare me for this time.

And now Poiema is here — a collection of 64 poems, most of which have appeared in periodicals. I invite you to celebrate with me. I will be reading at Redeemer College (Ancaster) on September 25th, and at Nasagaweya Farm (Milton) on October 19th. Please check my website for other readings and events as they are arranged.

D.S. Martin is Music Critic for Christian Week; his new poetry book, Poiema (Wipf & Stock), and his chapbook So The Moon Would Not Be Swallowed are available at


Linda Wegner said...

Congratulations on this wonderful achievement! Although I live on the other side of the country so can't attend your readings, I'll be cheering you on from the shores of the Pacific!

Blessings on you and the book!

violet said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
violet said...

Congratulations!! It has a beautiful cover too. How did the reading go?

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