From Shore to Shoormal / D’un rivage à l’autre
Poems in English, French, & Shetland dialect /
Poèmes en mirroirs—anglais–français–dialecte shetlandais
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Two voices celebrate their Atlantic connection.
Whilst Donna Allard writes on the coastal fringe in New Brunswick, Canada, Nat Hall walks
and writes by her shoormal, somewhere on the 60th parallel in her windswept Shetland Islands,
Scotland’s most northerly archipelago. “Shore”, as described by J. L. Leprohon in her
“Sea Shore Musings” poem, is the Creator’s power—in her own Canadian home,
“Mysterious, moaning main,/ in dreams I’ll see thy snow-white foam”. It’s described by
Chile’s bard Pablo Neruda in “No me hagan caso / Forget about Me”, as a place
where the sea washes, throws up crab claws and skulls of many kinds …
“Shoormal”, as defined by Robert Alan Jamieson in his Shoormal, A Sequence of Movements
(Polygon, 1986): “In Shetland, da shoormal is the shallows on a beach; the space between
the tides where the moon weighs the density of the ocean …” that area where sand shifts.
From Shore to Shoormal is a journey between Acadia’s Shediac Bay
and Shetland’s Ninian Sands—a celebration of the poets’ shared North Atlantic.
Donna Allard: “acadianrose”—Acadian-born,
New Brunswick-based barefoot gardener, pirate poet, and peacemaker.
She became inspired by poet Milton Acorn, and poet–editor Libby Oughton.
Her mentor was poet–activist Valerie LaPointe.
Nat Hall: “nordicblackbird”—Norman-born,
Shetland-based poet and visual artist, world intellectual nomad,
who lives and writes on 60° North.