In the late 1980s of London, Ontario—a time in Canada when the recession lay like a lead weight on the shoulders of young people, leaving the future bleak—an eighteen-year-old girl is working for the summer at a corn canning factory. Her story is told through a series of masterfully-sculpted linked poems, following her relationship with her boyfriend, her alcoholic mother, her terminally-ill grandfather, the factory job, and the man who every night “peels an onion and eats it as if it were an apple.” The Onion Man doesn’t speak English and is tormented by the other workers, and after his son dies, he commits suicide at the factory. The girl finds his body and the traumatic event prompts her to rethink the direction of her life.
Tightrope Books, 2011. ISBN: 9781926639390. 130 pp.Softcover. Fine.
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