The Port Inventory
SynopsisThe Saint Lawrence River glides beneath high windows while, close by, schoolchildren’s bright winter coats glow in Parthenais Prison’s shade. In a hotel on a cliff above Biarritz, a man peers down into a darkened courtyard and thinks he hears low sobbing through the plashing of a fountain. In an east coast fishing village, a bedridden child experiences heightened lucidity in delirium. A slum landlord in Prince Rupert gives lessons on the British Empire. These are a few moments in The Port Inventory. Spanning the distances between the Newfoundland fishing village where he grew up and Montreal, the city he has made his home, McGrath’s poems drop a ladder into memory’s root cellar and find it luminescent.