Publication Year

I am the Big Heart


What does it mean to be the big heart? Or to hope to be the big heart? Or to fail to be that big heart? How far can a heart stretch? How does being a parent stretch it further? How does a heart manage under the pressure of children, of self, of hospital technician, of partner, of death? In this collection, big heartedness is both demand and desire. It emerges from family life—the kid who says to your face that she prefers her other parent; the father monkeying around in the art gallery; the mother who “gets on with it” in silence; the husband, distant and intimate under the marriage yoke. There is also in this collection the stirring of wilder desires than family is supposed to nurture, feelings more fiercely self-assertive than a parent—a mother particularly—is supposed to admit. This collection asks how to rise to the occasions that family presents and also how to let oneself spill over the bounds of familial roles.


Sarah Venart

Sarah Venarts’s poetry has been published in Numero Cinq, Concrete and River, The New Quarterly, The Malahat Review, The Fiddlehead, This Magazine, Prism International, and on CBC Radio. She is the author of Woodshedding (Brick Books, 2007) and Neither Apple Nor Pear. Sarah lives in Montreal and teaches writing at John Abbott College.

Chapter Title Contents Contributors Pages Year Price


Epiphany – Attenborough – Walk to School – The Chauffeur – The Midwife Advises Me – This Strange Thing Happened the Day You Were Born – The Difficult Ones … 17 $1.70


The Widening – Albert County Breeder – A White Tent Goes Up – Troy – What Are You Waiting For? – The Heart Speaks – I Believe You Still Have My Key – … 17 $1.70


Then – The Rising Action – Wild Exile – At the Foundling Home – Back to the Land – Lambing Season – Wedding in Rimouski – Juice – The Dress – … 25 $2.50


On Being a Sculptor – Room 317, Chateau de Champlain – A Visitation – Tell Me What to Do – The Heiress – Fox’s Sleep Revisited – Woolf Digression – … 13 $1.30


Overheard at the Sports Centre – The Residency – Blanche – You Bring It Home with You – Supper Hour – The Standstill – Killing the Dream – In the … 24 $2.40