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by Ann Diamond



"Outrageous, blasphemous, painful, hilarious, angry, and touching," was the way a reviewer described Ann Diamond's A Nun's Diary. This description cuts to the heart of Diamond's work. Never complacent, and with a good measure of black humour, she takes chances and provokes us to think about the state of our relationships with each other, perhaps even the state of our country. In Terrorist Letters she kicks up the sediment and does us all a great service by doing so. Welcome to Ann Diamond's disturbing beauty-to what her editor calls "Letters from Hell."


From "How I Became a Terrorist", Terrorist Letters By Ann Diamond

First I learned to shoot the buttons off mailmen and others wearing the uniform of Canada. Later I would fling myself under snowplows, emerging flat as a child's mitten. I hid in the blackened drifts of winter's debris, coughing up particles from tarpaper lungs, spitting them out on the fractured sidewalks of spring. Homeless shades were my cronies. I hid, ate, slept with doomed species. As the last desperate years of my apprenticeship unfurled I perceived that this compulsion had already killed half my generation while we few survivors now limped in meaningless circles, mere shadows drained of substance. It seemed all wrong somehow but it had grown too late to slink back to decency. That would be purest treachery a form of failure a certain invitation to literary defeat. The other writers were penning hymns to snowflakes, love, machinery, human purity. Only I wallowed in negation and death.