Breathing November is Tanis MacDonald’s ode to the friends she loses to the HIV virus. After a close friend tests positive with the disease, MacDonald joins him on the journey of the last seven years of his life, documenting the memories in this beautiful chapbook that is endearing and tender.
Divided into three sections, she explores the discovery, the understanding, and finally the acceptance of such an immense loss. Along her travels to celebrate the life of her dear friend, she is touched by so many more, her own life forever altered.
Tanis MacDonald is the author of three poetry collections, Fortune (Turnstone), Holding Ground (Seraphim), and Rue the Day (Turnstone), and the editor of Speaking of Power: The Poetry of Di Brandt (Wilfrid UP). Holding Ground was nominated for the League of Canadian Poets’ Gerald Lampert Award, and for the Eileen Sykes MacTavish Award at the Manitoba Writing and Publishing Awards in 2001. She won the Bliss Carman Poetry Award in 2003, and is associate professor of Canadian literature in the Department of English and Film Studies at Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, Ontario.