Thanks to ARC‘s Jenny Haysom for mentioning the Palimpsest reissue of Steven Heighton’s groundbreaking Stalin’s Carnival.
The collection, which won the 1990 Gerald Lampert award, was originally published by Quarry Press in 1989, and Palimpsest reissued the book in 2013. Much as it had in the 1990s, Stalin’s Carnival ignited a new generation of poets and critics: Michael Lista called it “[a] forgotten ur-text to so much of what Canadian poetry has become in the intervening quarter century since its publication.”
At the heart of the book lies a group of powerful poems that examines the transformation of Josef Stalin from romantic and political poet to notorious dictator. This remarkable sequence is framed by two others: the first a suite of highly physical poems that embrace, through form and content, the human body and ideas of order; and the second which explores dissolution and entropy, and the eros that redeems them. This reissue has been revised by Heighton and includes his preface, as well as an introduction by Ken Babstock.
Pick up a copy of Stalin’s Carnival now!