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Rock Creek Blues

by Thelma Poirier

Rock Creek Blues

Winner of the 2012 Saskatchewan Book Award for Poetry. Shortlisted for the 2012 Acorn-Plantos Award.

Rock Creek Blues is both a tribute to, and a lament for, a way of life that is fast disappearing from the grasslands of the Canadian prairie. Thelma Poirier writes of the land and its inhabitants – plant, animal, and human – in vivid and loving detail, with deep feeling and authenticity. In poetry that is spare, strong, and unsentimental, she describes the rancher's life, a life lived on the land where work is hard and weather matters, a life that changes as the seasons change, a life of fixing fence and hunting strays, of round-ups and branding and shipping cattle to market, but also a life made memorable by the beauty of landscape and sky, of birds and beasts.

The section "New Orleans, Saskatchewan" adds an exotic touch as, on the strains of a mother's bluesy music, readers are carried south from the Great Plains to Louisiana. In "The January File", it's the threat of the Gulf War that throws its foreboding shadow over ranch country. Finally in "Call This Place Home", a section that reprises many of the currents flowing through the book, the narrator admits that it`s time to leave the ranch and the live she loved and longs for.

Thelma Poirier's very spirit shares the fragility of the grasslands ecosystem and all its creatures, great and small.

*Coteau Books has made Rock Creek Blues available in alternate formats in cooperation with NNELS.


5.5" x 8.5" 120 pages
16.95 CDN; 16.95 USD
E-Book Price
Poetry Tradepaper Adult
Thelma Poirier
Author Photo

About the Author

Thelma Poirier ranches with her husband near Fir Mountain in deep southern Saskatchewan. She has published two volumes of poetry with Coteau Books: Grasslands: The Private Hearings, based on her poetic presentation to the public hearings on the Grasslands National Park, and Double Visions. In 1997, Thelma edited Cowgirls: 100 Years of Writing the Range, an anthology of women's writing about the plains. Her work has also appeared in the anthologies Heading Out, Ride Off Any Horizon II and Labour of Love. In addition to her other literary work, Thelma is a "cowboy poet" and an avid promoter of the artform.


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