The Marrow of Longing


Dr. Celeste Nazeli Snowber

Professor in the Faculty of Education at Simon Fraser University

A descendent of Armenian genocide survivors, Celeste Nazeli Snowber explores the relationship between longing, belonging, and identity in her third book of poetry. With The Marrow of Longing, Snowber uncovers universal themes as she traces her own heartaches, yearnings and lessons learned in the kitchen. 

The inherited and intergenerational trauma of the Armenian genocide marked Snowber’s childhood. Her poems express both a sense of loss and the satisfaction of being a survivor and witness. 

Snowber’s work is always both deeply personal and deeply interpersonal. In excavating her own vulnerabilities and longings she invites the reader into a community of reflection: “look beneath the surface / how many dimensions/ one object, one heart holds.” “Fragments can hold a world,” writes Snowber.  In reflecting on her own childhood, The Marrow of Longing, explores universal experiences: fragmented memories of grandparents, parents’ love letters, the tastes of a mother’s cooking, prayers in the night.

Snowber, C. N. (2020) The Marrow of Longing. HARP Publishing.