In her book, "Looking Through Stone" award winning Canadian
poet Susan Ioannou repeats this theme, but in a way that only an
accomplished poet and wordsmith can.
In her poem "The Link" she asks;
"For what are we,
but the calcium of bones,
the brines of underground seas
awash with magnesium, potassium, iron
and she ends by reminding us,
"that like volcanic ash
earth is what we came from
and will become again"
"Looking Through Stone" is divided into four parts.
Part 1 is "Petra", which, as the first poem in this section
informs us, is ancient Greek for "rock". In this section
the author manages to convey through her poetry something which
I have struggled to explain in my own writings many times; that
the earth is in continual torment and motion and of the inexorable
and unending forces which are continually changing the world we
Part 2 is "Metallica", in which we discover historical
facts used to portray the relationship between man and metal, from
the prehistoric mining of copper and minerals to make beads and
everyday utensils, to the inherent qualities of platinum and its
present day use in everything from surgical instruments to deadly
Part 3 is "Gem Lure", Here the author uses her skill
as a poet to describe the fascination people have always had with
stones and crystals. In this section she looks at the way gem stones
have been used for everything from magical healing to simple beauty
Part 4 is I admit, the first section I looked at. Titled "Going
Under", this section uses geological and mining facts, blended
with history and folklore which is then shaped and moulded into
easy to read poetry.
At first glance one could be forgiven for thinking that "Looking
Through Stone" was some sort of New Age anthology of poetry
about rocks and crystals, but Susan Ioannou has accomplished much
more than simply combining mysticism, geology, mineralogy and poetry.
She has managed to take all of those things and blend them with
scientific facts which go beyond mere amateur observations, with
history and myths which are surprising and enlightening, and with
passion and beauty, which draws the reader eagerly onward for the
During the ten years since the MinersAdvice site has been on the
internet, I have read a great deal of mining related poetry which
has been sent to me from poets all over the world. I've read of
mining disasters, political oppression, human struggles against
tyrannical mine owners, and just about everything else you can expect
from such an emotive subject.
Susan Ioannou's book "Looking Through Stone" is actually
a breath of fresh air. The way she puts her ideas across to the
reader is very new to me and I enjoyed reading her book immensely.