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Topic: John Burnside

Introducing Aislinn Hunter

There is a poem of Aislinn Hunter’s entitled “Everything Lost is Found Again” that is both short enough, and deceptively simple enough for me to quote here in its entirety:
the ring that lay for months behind the dresser,
the book finally returned by a friend,
apples reborn in the boughs of an old tree
and the years appearing suddenly
ripe fruit in the open hand.
The brevity of this poem is important, because it highlights Aislinn Hunter’s gift for poetic economy (which is not to say that her poems are always short; rather, that she is one of those poets who has an uncanny ability to say exactly as much as she wants with the most economical of means). What matters more, however, is the deceptive simplicity: Hunter is forever taking us into what we think of as familiar territory–whether it be familiar images, familiar ideas, seemingly well-worn philosophical notions–and revealing what was missed, in all that supposed familiarity: what we took for granted, what we didn’t want to acknowledge, or even–as in this poem–what we gave up on too soon….