The legendary Terry Sawchuk is said to have kept parts of himself in jars: one for teeth, one for bone chips, and another for his appendix. no cage contains a stare that well is jarring in much the same way. Each poem in this collection is a self-contained vessel in which a distinct bit of our national game – a player or a fight, a save or a goal, an injury or a regret – is preserved; mementos cross-cut into countless sheets of ice.
Often dark and brooding, this book offers a league of gloomy characters: a spiteful Zamboni driver and a nearly blinded beer-leaguer; a maimed minor-hockey coach and that over-bearing hockey dad you’ve heard in the rink. These are poems about hockey – shifting their way through the game, its characters, images, and passions.
no cage contains a stare that well is like an impossible glove save in overtime – exulting in the game while examining the darker, musty corners of its locker rooms. But these poems speak to life off-ice as well: to how we know what we know, how we feel what we feel, and how we win or lose.
Matt Robinson is a Residence Community Coordinator at the University of New Brunswick in Fredericton, where he also plays goal in the UNB Intramural Hockey League. His previous books of poetry include how we play at it: a list and A Ruckus of Awkward (Insomniac Press), which was short-listed for the Gerald Lampert Memorial and ReLit Awards.
Published: October 2005
Dimensions: 7.5 x 5 in.