What Your Hands Have Done

What Your Hands Have Done

4.25 (16 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author) 

Free delivery worldwide

Available. Dispatched from the UK in 2 business days
When will my order arrive?


What Your Hands Have Done looks at how life spent in a close-knit fishing family in rural Prince Edward Island marks a person. The book is rooted in PEI but moves from there to Toronto where the malaise of life proves to be unbound to the sameness of small-town days spent hauling gear on the Atlantic or toiling in rust-red potato fields.

Bailey examines the world around him from the inside, observing the minute to account for the vast. These poems are laid bare and free of ornament, revealing the hard-won wisdom just below the surface:

She was there, cooked for you. Helped clean

the mess you'd become from decades

spent on your father's ocean hauling lobsters

from its depths, gulping down the sea air.

Even when the booze was too much,

she knew you were more than the vomit

caked to your shirt. Less than confessions

made beneath the red summer moon.
show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 96 pages
  • 140 x 203 x 5.08mm | 90.72g
  • Canada
  • English
  • 0889713502
  • 9780889713505

Review quote

Chris Bailey canvasses easily--adroitly--that difficult, East Coast world of hardscrabble, hard-luck ports and hard-living, hard-drinking fishers, the epicureans of cynicism and the aesthetes of brutalism. This dominion's one where funerals are festive and the clear-eyed must enjoy adultery and the clear-headed must tolerate suicide. Think E.J. Pratt meets Charles Bukowski.

--George Elliott Clarke
show more

About Chris Bailey

Chris Bailey is a fisherman from North Lake, Prince Edward Island, and holds an MFA in creative writing from the University of Guelph. He is a recipient of the Milton Acorn Award for Poetry and his writing has appeared in UPEIArts Review, The Puritan’s Town Crier and on CBC Radio. Bailey now lives in Toronto where he is the managing editor of Villamere: the lowbrow magazine of high-end CanLit.
show more

Rating details

16 ratings
4.25 out of 5 stars
5 69% (11)
4 6% (1)
3 12% (2)
2 6% (1)
1 6% (1)
Book ratings by Goodreads
Goodreads is the world's largest site for readers with over 50 million reviews. We're featuring millions of their reader ratings on our book pages to help you find your new favourite book. Close X