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Book review: From the ashes of Lytton comes fierce, personal poetry

Tom Sandborn

Published Nov 03, 2023



This remarkable little book contains far more than disaster reportage, although the vividly rendered sensory detail that laces through each poem does make for powerful reporting.


In 2021 in B.C., climate change opened the gates of hell.


On June 30, 2021, the town of Lytton burnt to the ground. The spectacular catastrophe came at the end of a climate-change-driven “heat dome” event that ran from June 25 to July 1 that year, killing 619 in the province.


The day before the fire, Lytton suffered the highest temperature ever reported in Canada, 49.6 C. The local poet and art café owner Meghan Fandrich was there when it happened, and her debut book, Burning Sage: Poems from the Lytton Fire, records her fierce, anguished testimony from the scene of the crime.


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