Ilya Tourtidis

Romancing Eternity

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It is no easy task to shine a light on what we understand the human journey to be. To do so requires a point of view, a still point, that is somewhat paradoxical in nature. But one which ultimately allows us to observe the self, as it sparks and sustains the love affair with eternity we all share. From our deepest fears and blunders to our most lofty accomplishments, it is this romance that kindles and intoxicates, and provides the backdrop to all our wanderings. We are perplexed and inspired by it, and often hide in its dazzling radiance and warmth. But we cannot escape the force of its demand, which seems to be: to find joy in what we carry, bring to consciousness what we can, and in so doing, continue to heave through the disorder that circles the big bang experience we call life.

Using the trope of a Greek chorus, something “red and meadow-sweet, trying to slip back onto our tongues,” Tourtidis reflects deeply on the human struggle to become fully present, or, as he beautifully says, incarnate. I picture the writer on an apartment balcony attending to the “glints and angles” of his pen as he tries “to make the heart a meadow again.” The reader is wooed by Tourtidis’ luscious imagery to enter into his thought-provoking landscape of the heart.
~ Cornelia Hoogland, author of Trailer Park Elegy (Harbour, 2017)

These poems reveal sufferings, survivings, sorrows, dilemmas and confrontations that we all encounter after our distractions and temptations of choice have run their course. Echoes of Olav Hauge’s luminous spaces and Juan Ramon Jimenez’s stark imagery of the ocean arise as the reader is taken through one’s “stutter like the dead,” moments after the brash courages of youth have worn themselves out. There is a vague yearning that many will recognize here that will arouse argument, avoidance, attraction — but never indifference.
~ Daniel Jay Kirk, poet and visual artist

Ilya Tourtidis was born in Greece in 1949. He emigrated to Australia when he was four years old and to Canada when he was fifteen. Educated at the University of Victoria, he worked as a teacher and later as a counselor in the Comox Valley where he now resides. He was co-winner of the Gerald Lampert Award in 1994 for his first book of poems Mad Magellan’s Tale (Sono Nis Press, 1993). A subsequent collection of his poetry, The Spell of Memory, was published by Oolichan Books (2004). This was followed by two further books, Path of Descent and Devotion (Libros Libertad, 2009)) and Bright Bardo (Libros Libertad, 2011). In addition to poetry, Ilya Tourtidis has also self published eight eBooks of various genres on the Kobo platform.

ISBN 978-1-77171-241-5
88 pages
6 x 9
Now available

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