Diagnosing Minor Illness in Children is a striking third collection by one of Canada’s most essential poets. Kerry Ryan stares without flinching at the blood and mud smeared on everything in her path: family, death, memory, fine-toothed lice combs, “Brittle air swept by the Jetstream,” and herself. We watch with awe as the poet struggles to suckle a wolf pup while she admires the softness of her daughter’s cheek. Through the lens of motherhood, the poet comes to terms—with grief, humour, and music—with self-doubt and dislocation. While staying close to home, she sees herself (and us) in the birds blown thousands of kilometres off course. Ryan’s Diagnosing Minor Illness in Children is a fierce, edgy, and tender book that will leave you wanting more.
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