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John Donlan : Comments by Writers and Critics


"There's a species of aesthetic poise — we might call it musical intelligence — which comes about when discipline and surprise are working, not just in combination, but each for the other. I think of John Donlan's poems as wise acrobats, alive to the many weathers of the self but equally well tuned to cityscape and landscape, performing athletic meditations inside a stillness they create for themselves. In Green Man we have a collection by one of our finest poets working at full stretch."
—Don McKay

"Domestic Economy consitutes one of the most assured, as well as the most beautiful, depictions we have of post-modern Canada; nor is it easy to say which is the more astonishing: the easy command of everything philosophical and cultural that has gone into bringing about the post-modern or the intimacy and immediacy with which the daily facts of life in this country are brought to art. [...] The effect is an exhilarating release into intelligence and inclusiveness -- this is a poetry whose door is always open — without surrendering any of the luminous pleasure that comes from tight formal beauty."
—Ken Snyder, The Antigonish Review

"intelligent, articulate ... masterfully condensed style"
—Cary Fagan, Globe and Mail

"skill with musical phrasing, line, and image"
—Mary Dalton, Books in Canada

"wit, feeling, and linguistic acrobatics ... concise, taut"
—Mark Young, Scene

"thoroughly accomplished in the exact, on-going articulate rhythms of its long lines, its syntax full to the edge with an intelligence always breaking into surprise"
—Stephen Ratcliffe, Avenue B Press

"important insights ... the speaker's voice is extremely likeable and is open and honest ... food for the soul"
—Jay Ruzesky, Event

"talented ... accomplished ... overtly metaphysical"
—Cary Fagan, London Free Press

John Donlan's works copyright © to the author.

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