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May 1, 2003, Gazette

Helix: New and Selected Poems

By John Steffler

Helix: New and Selected Poems

The poems in Helix: New and Selected Poems cover a span of more than 20 years of writing and deal with a variety of subjects: the landscape and recent social history of Newfoundland, the problem of finding and keeping a home, and issues of loss and renewal. The poems show a perennial interest in the power of wilderness, the dangerous, vital forces in the psyche and the physical world.

Published by Signal Editions, the literary division of Montreal’s Vehicule Press, the book is arranged in four sections, the first three consisting of selections from three of Mr. Steffler’s earlier books of poems and the fourth section presenting a group of his new poems. All of the selections of Mr. Steffler’s old and new poetry were made by Carmine Starnino, Signal Edition’s literary editor.

John Steffler has been a professor of English at Sir Wilfred Grenfell College since it opened in 1975. He writes fiction and poetry and in recent years has served as writer-in-residence at Concordia University, Saint Mary’s University, the Université de Moncton, and the University of New Brunswick.

John Steffler

The author of seven books, he has received the Newfoundland and Labrador Arts Council Artist of the Year Award, the Atlantic Poetry Prize, and the 1998 Writers’ Alliance of Newfoundland and Labrador’s Poetry Book Award. His novel, The Afterlife of George Cartwright, won the Smithbooks/Books in Canada First Novel Award and the Thomas Raddall Award and was shortlisted for the Governor General’s Award and the Commonwealth First Novel Award. He is currently at work on a new novel.

Helix: New and Selected Poems
was recently named the winner of the 2003 Writers’ Alliance of Newfoundland and Labrador’s Poetry Book Award.