In an artists’ colony in Mexico, a taxidermist tends animals in their after-life, contemplating what remains of us after death. Among the artists she encounters are a painter of miniatures, a war photographer, a light artist, a ghazal singer, and dancers from Tanzteater Wuppertal, as they reflect on the impulse to make work and meaning in a world where value is increasingly monetised. Within the extended narrative are self-contained poems ranging in form from syllabics and ghazals to OULIPO-inspired anagram poems, drawing on found text and verbatim speech to bring a choir of voices to life. The title work is followed by two elegies.
The Glimmer is Shazea Quraishi’s second full-length book of poetry, following her debut, The Art of Scratching.
"Constraint, precision and technical mastery characterise this compelling and generous narrative of collective artistic endeavour. If the ‘form is the measure of the obsession’ then this collection is a lifelong obsession with the truth-telling nature of art." - Sasha Dugdale, poet and translator
‘the…extraordinarily powerful and haunting Glimmer contains poems that range in form from syllabics and ghazals to OULIPO-inspired anagram. Quraishi’s poems emerge from found text and verbatim speech through the corridors of which she brings a choir of voices to life.’ – Ian Brinton, Long Poem Magazine
‘In her exquisite The Glimmer, Shazea Quraishi speaks in the voice of a taxidermist, preserving the bodies of small creatures with painstaking skill... This intimate work leads her outwards, to engagement with other artists in the Mexican village where she is staying, and to meditations on the nature of art.’ - Dorothy Yamamoto, ARTEMISpoetry
"A second collection from Pakistani-born Canadian poet, playwright and translator Quraishi, packed with many voices, such as a Mexican taxidermist, a painter of miniatures, a war photographer, a filmmaker, a light artist, a novelist, a ghazal singer and dancers from Tanztheater Wuppertal." – Will Smith, The Bookseller
'This is a collection generous in wisdom, in which every act of creativity is underpinned by a refusal to accept the silence of death… As we are told in ‘Day 23’, ‘The form is always the measure of obsession’ and this is a good summary of the emotional core of this remarkable book.' – Ellora Sutton, Mslexia