Double Negative

Written by Betsy Warland and Daphne Marlatt

 A unique collaborative writing project of poetry and prose, this book was written with Warland’s then-partner, writer Daphne Marlatt. It is structured in three parts. The first part takes place when they are on a cross-country reading and lecture tour in Australia during which they wrote a collaborative long poem on their train trip from Melbourne to Perth.

 The second part takes place after they have returned from Australia and are on a writing holiday on Galiano Island, off the coast of Vancouver, B.C. They record a conversation in which they reflect on their experience of writing their long poem and what they left out and why. And in the final section, they each pull a quote from one another’s poems in the first section and riff off of it in poetic prose pieces. Throughout, the text plays with doubleness—the doubleness or duplicity of language, of collaborations, of beginning the poem in Australia and concluding it on the West Coast. “Woman is the negative term this writing (im)prints in the positive.”

 1988 gynergy books/Ragweed Press