Much of Gutteridge’s poetry is based on his remembrances of Point Edward, the small Canadian village perched on the shore of Lake Huron where he grew up. His poetry is rich and textured. His words fuse sense and sound, all tempered by the sense of time endless and flowing or frozen, or, in the case of the sands and waters of Canatara, simply eternal. I am, as always, most awed by Gutteridge’s Canatara poems; his love letters to the dunes and the endless summers spent playing in the sand and braving the icy waters that whisper enticingly. I find myself captivated with the concept of immortality imbued in those sands and the vastness of the elements that built those shores up so lovingly. Family is also an enduring theme in this work, with the poet’s grandfather looming large over everything. He is a constant, a source of strength, even if gone too soon. Gutteridge deftly plays with time, weaving past and present and the enduring aspect of life in Mara’s Lamp. As with many of his other works, the reader is privileged to see Point Edward and those friends, who are his timeless past, revel and play in the shadows at night and in the brilliant, scintillating sunshine on endless Canatara Beach afternoons. This is a remarkable work that prods our sense of self and personal immortality, and it reveals how we are part of something grand and enduring.
Reviewed By Jack Magnus
for Readers’ Favorite