Reni Gower | Fragments: Garnier | mixed media | 2007
Photo courtesy TCC Visual Arts Center
"Poetry writing for Campbell is a somewhat unpredictable process, where the imagination can strike at any time: ‘I’m a fan of the Moleskin notebook. I carry around one small enough to fit into a big pocket so that I can scribble at any given time. I think poetry needs that kind of archiving because it’s an art of fragments.’
"The Caribbean is a constant undercurrent; experiences of home have the power to travel, translate and transpire in other places. Another poem such as ‘Iguana’ sing a kind of pan-Caribbeanness. The iguana forms an important symbol in this piece and the writer explores its local significance on various islands including Trinidad, Haiti, St. Lucia and of course The Bahamas, Campbell’s birthplace. In tracing the reptile’s regional importance, Campbell moves beyond the boundaries of a single island, forging links with others: ‘The earth is on the back/ of an ageless iguana’, declaring ‘We are all from the Land of Iguana, / Hewanorra, Carib name for St. Lucia."
POET Christian Campbell's book Running the Dusk is examined in this essay at the ARC website here.