Anvil Press

Contemporary Canadian Literature with a Distinctly Urban Twist

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Cover for Serpentine Loop

Serpentine Loop

By Elee Kraljii Gardiner

Writers, like skaters, score the blank sheet and test the edge of inclusion and exclusion. Most of these poems begin with a word from skating and push off to another topic. Others revisit ideas of femininity, control, and language as pattern, or visit the past through movement, or enact principles from the rink such as symmetry, joy, endurance, crescendo and accent, revolution, response.

The blade melts ice via friction and pressure. Even though the author drifted away from skating, the language was imprinted in her — a tracing, a line extending beyond the margins.

These are engaging and poignant poems about life on and off the ice.


“Here we have poems that slice like a skate’s freshly sharpened blade, language that interrogates and disarms even as it loops seamlessly back to the lyric.”
—Rachel Rose (Vancouver’s Poet Laureate and recipient of the Pat Lowther Award for Poetry, BC Book Prizes)

“Elee Kraljii Gardiner’s poetry bowled me over with its breadth of emotion and vision. Her writing has the movement of someone who understands skating.”
—Dick Button, author, commentator and two-time Olympic figure skating Gold Medalist

“Kraljii Gardiner’s elegant body of work, poignant and decisive, is always precise. This first collection is a concentration of gender, of resilience, of urgency.”
—Joan Naviyuk Kane, Winner of the American Book Award (Hyperboreal)

“[a] stirring and precise debut poetry collection … Gardiner’s sparkling and sensitive kinematic style is everywhere evident…”
— Herizons

“The poems are distinctive for their brave use of metaphor, often situated in medical contexts, that muscles beyond conceit and into other-worldliness…readers may think of Coleridge’s albatross, the poem eerie yet somehow weighted concretely.”
– Poetry is Dead,

ISBN 978-1-77214-054-5
5.25 x 7.75 | 104 pp
$18 CAN / $18 US
Rights available:  World

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