Listen to the author read three excerpted poems!
From the Back Cover:
In this first collection from a discerning Canadian voice, Doyali Farah Islam draws you toward the same gentle listening place from which her verses pour. Islam bares her inner journey of daily meditation and prayer – decanting in the process, from poet-self to page, bold images, fluid linguistic turns, delightful double meanings, startling word play, deep thought, and small insights. Rooted in sacred stories, in the Qur’anic concept of the Day of Alast (the Day of the Primordial Covenant), and in remembrance of the Divine, Yusuf and the Lotus Flower embraces Abrahamic and Indic orientations without exoticizing either. Yusuf (Joseph) is a figure common to Judeo-Christian and Islamic narratives. He is especially beloved by Sufis. The lotus is common to Hindu, Jain, Buddhist, Sikh, and yogic philosophy. In distinct ways, both motifs symbolize beautiful tenacity throughout hardship. Intone these poems. They will call back to you.
Poet’s Playlist – 21 June 2014
New College – University of Toronto, 16 February 2012
Black Coffee Poet – 11 January 2012
The Window – December 2011
The Strand – 16 November 2011
BASICS News – 06 April 2011
Frequency Feminisms, CKLN Radio – 11 March 2011
“Doyali Farah Islam’s distinctive poems carry a rich “song of the divine” in and out of strains of parable and mysticism. These poems are bold, intricate buds of faith; audacious notes composing themselves into a “blossomed sustenance.” Graceful, yearning, Islam writes a wise-beyond-her-years poetry steeped in a multi-sepalled spirituality, each petal singing “the salt of longing.” Yusuf and the Lotus Flowermarks not only the debut of an extraordinary poet, but a fearless fusion of conviction and imagination, spirit and ink.”
“There is a gift of clarity here, a yearning for a wry annunciation, that makes this Sufi voice sing very truly in its chosen English idiom.”
Timothy Winter, Faculty of Divinity, University of Cambridge