In All We Saw, Anne Michaels returns to poetry with strikingly original lyrics to explore one of her essential concerns: "what love makes us capable of, and incapable of." Here are the ways in which passion must accept, must insist, that “death . . . give / not only take from us.” This piercing collection treats desire in a style that is chaste, spare, figuratively modulated, almost classical. A sea in darkness, a woman’s hair shining in light, rain falling... how quiet must a voice be in order to be heard? In this way, desire is evoked with intensity and precision. We are left with a renewed awareness of the mystery at the core of existence; we enter a space that is ‘not inside, not outside: / dusk’s doorway,’ where love remains alive.
Praise for All We Saw:
"It marks the return of a poet to her initial calling -- a return forged of immense love and suffering that insists on the necessity of poetry to revive what is lost. These poems reveal the uncanny and difficult truth that acknowledges how the dead guide us. It is a brave work that shows us there are no limits to love." - Quill and Quire
"All We Saw does not romanticize death or grief. Instead it continues a friendship enlivened by memory... If there is courage, love and daring, it is in this book of poems." - Prism Magazine