The first island, other than literary ones, that called to Deirdre Kessler was Prince Edward Island; she arrived by the Caribou-Wood Islands ferry one warm spring day and stayed. Many of the poems in Afternoon Horses reflect her bond with the landscape at 46̊12'N x 63̊12'W. The second island is Tasmania, where she was writer in residence in Hobart in October 2007. Deirdre is currently working on an adult novel called McDonough's Hornpipe.


The names of things

He’s four now, puts on
his own little clothes, speaks
in complete sentences, tells me
he lives in Toronto, Ontario, Canada,
and has been to many places:
Prince Edwer Dyelan,
Nova Scotia, and the zoo.

What do you see at the zoo?

Giraffes and lions and afternoon horses.

He is eating blueberries picked
the day before in a field
above dyked marshlands,
Annapolis Valley highbush berries;
the flock of family browsing
in the same reverie.

And what are afternoon horses?

They go places in the afternoon.

That’s how it is with the world,
the names of things.