Tangelo Tangents

Pedlar Press has done a lovely job with the books by May Chan The Fifth Girl and Dried Tangerine Skin with design by Zab (who introduced the Rubber Bit typeface in the headings to Maureen Scott Harris's Drowning Lessons). In the Chan books I like how the Chinese ideographs fit spaciously in the line with the Roman characters. As well the shape of the page with its generous leading accommodates the short lines — the white space complements it doesn't overwhelm. This is especially important in poems that rely on small gestures. Take for instance this excerpt from "Tangelos" from Dried Tangerine Skin. My quotation here doesn't do justice to the two-page spread and the breaking at a crucial point into a second column.

have a knobby protrusion
at the stem
and their beautiful deep
orange - red skin
easy to peel
and their flesh
[page break]
is sweet
yet langy.'

And the poem continues on the same page but in a column over to the right

a sharp.
distinctive flavour.'
The sharp distinctive flavour of the word play with "langy" echoing the "tangelo" subject/object would be lost without the typography. The column shift acts like a reboot which charts the poem into other tangy tastes (the poem continues with a description of the tangy hot sauce at a fast food Mexican restaurant chain) and still on the tip of the reader's tongue is the near relation of "l" and "t".

And so for day 1067