Derek Brooks and I met in the spring of 2012 when an event of the annual Edmonton Poetry Festival that I participated in was held at Harcourt House. I recall that the reading required the poets to sit on chairs arranged in an oblong, with the convener, Edmonton’s first poet laureate, Alice Major, positioned at the centre of one of the long curves, striking a tiny gong to signal a pause after, and simultaneously a pause before, a reader. Harcourt House promotes the work of emerging and established visual artists, and is one of Edmonton’s three artist-run centres. It is the largest community of visual artists in Edmonton, offers 42 studios, and regularly supports an artist-in-residence. The quality of the exhibitions is high.
Derek Brooks writes on Amazon:
When I first picked up this collection I was reminded of the first time I met Hendrik. He almost immediately struck me as a man who didn’t just live life but one who would seek it out. This collection of wisdom reinforces my original impression.
This is an assemblage of moments from one man`s life. A life that is not only lived as most live it but savoured and felt deeply. Most people do not have the courage to expose themselves the way that Slegtenhorst does here. In doing so he has given us an insight that can give us all a little more courage when dealing with our own tribulations.
Slegtenhorst manages to paint a vivid picture with words. He also paints a path into his own psyche and emotions.
I very much enjoyed reading this and I know I will have many more hours of exploration with this collection.