USEREVIEW 094 (Capsule): Feel Ways
Adrian De Leon, Téa Mutonji & Natasha Ramoutar, Editors
Feel Ways: A Scarborough Anthology (Mawenzi House, 2021)
ISBN 978-1-77415-011-5 | 96 pp | $22.95 CAD | BUY Here
Feel Ways: A Scarborough Anthology (2021) is an anthology of non-fiction, poetry and prose edited by Adrian De Leon, Téa Mutonji and Natasha Ramoutar. In this collection published by Mawenzi House Publishers, writers locate themselves and their stories within the suburb of Scarborough, ON. This collection pays homage to the intersections, grocery stores, and libraries that make Scarborough home, a place to leave, or a place that entices you to return, every time.
Featuring work from emerging writers, this collection is brimming with fierce pride for a place that is far too often labelled “a frontier for new objects of study, or a destitute place with undisciplined subjects.” Scarborough emerges as neither, its meaning forming a myriad of people and places in the reader’s mind. This place becomes hot air balloons bobbing up and down at the STC, motels speckling Kingston Road, and mangoes eaten on the curb in the summer heat. This anthology bikes and moves and commutes through a place that is familiar to many and yet it stubbornly evades definition.
Shaina Agbayani’s ‘Queer Earth: End of the World Erotics’ opens with the narrator biking northbound on Markham Road, traversing “imaginary borders” to evade a $4.25 transit fare. Through vignettes anchored in the narrator’s sense of place, this essay traces a route from their childhood home to another home, to a faraway university, and back home again. Agbayani establishes the tone of Feel Ways: “I refuse to make nationalism out of trauma, territorial acknowledgements out of violence. Scarborough is as ethereal as she is material. May we be blessed with the depths of her truths. May we observe” (p. 12).