M. (Marlene) Nourbese Philip is one of the most powerful, internationally reputed Afro-Caribbean poets in Canada today. Much of her appeal lies in the dexterous manner in which she intermingles the oral tradition with EuroAmerican traditions of writing. In this essay I will focus on both these traditions with specific reference to the poem ‘Discourse on the Logic of Language' in She Tries Her Tongue, Her Silence Softly Breaks. The first part of the essay deals with the narrative strategies by Philip to express the loss experienced by the Afro-Canadians, while the second part deals with my readerly response to the poem as a South Asian woman of colour belonging to a minority group, the Parsis. Despite our many differences, Philip's voice finds an echo in my heart for my people too have known the pain of exile and subsequent loss of identity.



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