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  • The Hunter
  • Written by George Murray
  • Format: Trade Paperback | ISBN: 9780771066757
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The Hunter

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Breathtaking new poetry by the author of The Cottage Builder’s Letter

In this brilliantly evoked new gathering of poems, George Murray creates a strange and menacing world, pulsating with sensory intensity. These poems don’t just inquire, they demand answers, and go seeking them through the realms of the past, the present, and the future. Here are stories and images that challenge, threaten, and fascinate by their dreamlike clarity, flickering through kaleidoscopic changes and throwing off resonant statements like sparks. “On either side of awe,” as Murray puts it in these innovative new poems, “stand horror and reverence.” Events and figures emerge swiftly out of one another in a landscape partly a futuristic or ancient wasteland, partly the generous earth we know. The collection as a whole forms a saga, moving from contemporary damage toward the possibilities – disaster? recovery? – that always exist “in the few moments we have under the sky.”



The architect of the cottage on the hill
never took into account
its foundations. Having been paid

for a hasty erection, he forgot what damage
the ages might do
to a dwelling built in a passion for ease.

It’s not the noise of the city that distracts,
it’s the narrative.
It’s the urge to pluck order, a through-­line,

purpose, from the seeming chaos. It’s the need
to make sense from nonsense
that occupies waking moments and coaxes

inactivity from accomplishment.
O for a pair of red eyes
in the woods. What should we fear

in an age that has killed emergency,
when stakes of destruction
have been jacked so high no one

can match the ante? The kindness
in the eyes of the dog
is not the opposite of the malice

dripping from the wolf’s maw. For now
we must share these shadows
with the dark, for it does not have its own.
For now we must go where they
do not want us.
For now we must explore.
George Murray|Author Desktop

About George Murray

George Murray - The Hunter
George Murray’s four books of poetry are Carousel, The Cottage Builder’s Letter, The Hunter, and, most recently, The Rush to Here. His work has appeared in many newspapers and magazines in Canada, and in the U.S. and Australia, including Descant, The Iowa Review, The Globe and Mail, Jacket, Mid-American Review, Nerve, Painted Bride Quarterly, and Slope. He is a contributing editor with Maisonneuve Magazine and editor of Bookninja.com. Raised in rural Ontario, he now lives in St. John’s.

Author Q&A

I began writing The Hunter in early 2001. The noise and bustle of New York City were breaking my concentration and leaving me mentally drained. My fragmented thoughts began to coalesce and The Hunter emerged as part of an emotional response to

“an age that has killed emergency,
when stakes of destruction
have been jacked so high no one

can match the ante.”

The broken, post-(or pre-)cataclysmic landscape of The Hunter existed before the events of that fall, but poems written subsequently were subtly affected by the disaster and took the book in new directions.



“There is a beauty within the poetic language.…This beauty is what makes The Hunter a compelling read. At this watershed moment in history, we are all looking for the beauty that lies somewhere beneath the ugliness of history and the ominous tone of prophecy.”
Quill & Quire

“He has the poet’s instinct, the knack for turning a good phrase and the verbal grit and suppleness to keep the reader engaged. . . . An important talent.”
National Post

  • The Hunter by George Murray
  • March 25, 2003
  • Poetry
  • McClelland & Stewart
  • $14.95
  • 9780771066757

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