Old Gods by Conor Kerr
A poetry collection that defies colonialism on the Prairies
Conor Kerr's poetry is in constant motion. Four runners streak through the night, racing with coyotes and roving across the land. Buses travel from town to town, from one memory to another, from past to present. Friends and lovers search for each other on Instagram and find nothing. And always the natural world travels alongside: the watching magpies, woodpeckers and cedar waxwings, the coyotes and porcupines. Family is the crisp wings of mallard ducks flying at dawn, just as it is a game of crib, a Mario Kart race, a dance party.
Old Gods defies colonialism on the Prairies. Kerr situates his reader in the Métis mindset: the old gods of the land are alive within the rivers, the birds, the hills and the prairies that surround us, and they'll always be here.(From Nightwood Editions).
Conor Kerr is a Métis and Ukrainian educator, writer and harvester. He is a member of the Métis Nation of Alberta and is descended from the Gladue, Ginther and Quinn families from the Lac Ste. Anne and Fort Des Prairies Métis communities and the Papaschase Cree Nation. His poem Prairie Ritual was on the 2021 CBC Poetry Prize longlist.
Kerr won the 2022 Novel ReLit Award for his debut novel Avenue of Champions, which was also longlisted for the 2022 Giller Prize and a finalist for the 2022 Amazon Canada First Novel Award.