The Summer We Didn’t Die is Christine Coates’ third poetry collection. It is an assured, tender collection that offers the reader a way to think about the mysteries at the heart of what it means to be human, in this place and time.
The Summer We Didn't Die by Christine Coates
Christine Coates casts her eye over the arc of her life, sweeping from childhood memories to Covid-19. In richly crafted, she recalls the sights and sounds of childhood, from party lines to fêtes, to a beloved grandparent and early loss. Life as a young woman in Johannesburg comes with its own pleasures and early love. There are poems of her travels; of the quiet intimacies of a long marriage and meditations on aging. Politics is echoed in the resounding roar of Marikana and a woman’s performance art. And then there is life under Covid-19 lockdown and the small pleasures of baking bread and growing quinces.