A History of the Theories of Rain explores the strange effect our current sense of impending doom has on our relation to time, approaching the unfolding climate catastrophe through its dissolution of the categories of “man-made” and “natural.” How do we go on with our daily lives while a disastrous future impinges upon every moment?
Stephen Collis provides no easy answers and offers no simple hope. Instead, he probes our current state of anxiety with care, humour, and an unflinching gazing into the darkness we have gathered around ourselves. Asking what form a resistance to the tenor of these out-of-joint times might take, A History of the Theories of Rain explores the links between climate’s “tipping points” and the borders constraining the plants, animals, and peoples forcibly displaced by a radically altered world ecology.
Taken together, these poems are as much an account of how we humans are grappling with a terrifying environmental predicament ... as they are odes to Earth itself ~Ryo Yamaguchi, https://www.poetryfoundation.org/harriet-books/reviews/155750/a-history-of-theories-of-rain
Collis’s "work is immediate, timely and timeless, providing amplification to what the lyric has long held as a quiet, underlying thread; by Collis, this eco-poetic is not mere flowering, but magnified... Collis has become one of our most essentially-engaged contemporary poets... [his poetry] is a rare lyric that includes actual action."~||~ ~rob mclennan, periodicities : a journal of poetry and poetics
“The past was imperfect, the present is imperfect and so is the future. No naïve idealism lurks in the words carefully chosen by Collis, who warns us that every step is a risk, even rain carrying the toxic payload of Fukishima ... Stephen Collis reminds us of the consequences of homocentric thinking in a world that depends on diversity, every species part of the healthy organism.”~||~ ~Linda Rogers, the Ormsby Review
—Linda Rogers, the Ormsby Review
“Stephen Collis has achieved something remarkable: an invigorating body of work that convincingly addresses both the urgency of the present moment and the long echoes of our historical and lyrical past … The depth and scope of Collis’s vision is startling and impressive; so are the courage, precision, and care he brings to the poems he creates.”~||~ ~Hoa Nguyen and Margo Wheaton
—Hoa Nguyen and Margo Wheaton