Reticent Bodies is the debut collection of poetry from Toronto writer Moez Surani, whose work has previously appeared in publications such as Carousel, Prairie Fire and PRISM International. He recently took the time to answer some questions for The Afterword. Full disclosure: I’ve known Moez for several years — first at university and then as a colleague here at the Post. You can find a preview of the book here.
The Afterword: Some of these poems date back almost a decade. Can you tell me how the older poems — the section called Kingston Poems, I guess — have evolved over the years, and why you felt it was important to include your older work?
Moez Surani: This collection is I think a long experiment — or many small experiments — in how reality can be depicted.
Reticent Bodies is Toronto author Moez Surani’s long-awaited debut collection. Shaped by a childhood spent listening to a mixture of Gujarati, Kutchi, Urdu and Swahili around the kitchen table, while attending a French Immersion school in Toronto, Surani’s poems could define the epitome of Canada’s ethnic layering. Spare Canadian lyricism is combined with unusual linguistic rhythms and sharp bursts of vibrant imagery in an exceptional poetic debut.