Trobairitz: Celebration of Voice, Love, Sex & Music in the Poetry of Catherine Owen
Review by Mark McCawley
by Catherine Owen
Anvil Press, 5.5×8, 156pp, $18.00 CAN/US
published, Fall 2012
Despite the dark, often violent patriarchal images and themes associated with Trobairitz’s heavy metal subtext and its concomitant social and sexual inequalities and class structures — Catherine Owen’s Trobairitz is an optimistic, even confident collection of poems celebrating the myriad voices of love: passionate love, erotic love, marital love, adulterous love in which Owen has rediscovered and reapplied rare medieval forms against a heavy metal backdrop of the present without losing a single beat.
Instead of embroiling her poems on easy feminist sexual polemics (as many of her reviewers and critics seem to do), Owen celebrates the power and strength of women in her poems in Trobairitz regardless of whether they are set in the 12th or 21st Century (in some poems, time itself merges):