$19.50 CDN / $18.00 US | Trade Paperback
Gunmetal Blue is an investigation of how to be in the world—how to be a doctor, how to be a poet, and how to be both. Tempered with memoir and populated with poetic case studies, Neilson learns about himself as his patients reveal their frailties. Medicine might be considered the more productive activity by society, but Neilson found poetry in every office visit. Taught to research clinical questions, he took this scientific practice and made it a literary one: how can a doctor better know his patients, and how does this translate into self-knowledge? Poetry and medicine are topics intertwined since the time of the Greeks and, in this case, the connection between the two literally becomes his lifeline.
“What he has written is a raw-boned, devastating, unflinching, uncomfortable and fiercely honest portrait of his life as a doctor and a poet… Gunmetal Blue is about a man finding his voice both as a physician and as a scribe. It is cold-eyed and elliptical. This is a memoir as memoir should be.”— Free Range Reading Blog
“Neilson reflects on his gradual recovery in taut, finely-wrought prose conveying tough-minded thoughts”—The Malahat Review
“[Neilson’s] work left me with a sense of completeness, of someone having come full circle through challenge and heartache—back to health.”—SubTerrrain Magazine