Author Archives: Chantal Martineau

About Chantal Martineau

Born in Halifax and raised in the suburbs of Montreal, Chantal Martineau is a journalist, author, poet, and potter. Her non-fiction writing, which is largely focused on foodways and culture, has appeared in such titles as Vogue, Bon Appetit, Saveur, The Atlantic, The Globe and Mail, and The Walrus. She is the author of the book How the Gringos Stole Tequila (Trinity University Press, 2015) and co-author of Finding Mezcal (Ten Speed Press, 2018), and is at work on a novel inspired by her grandfather’s research into their African Nova Scotian family tree. Her poetry looks at the intersections of memory and truth, identity and belonging. She works out of a small village in the Hudson River Valley, some 50 miles north of New York City, where she lives with her partner and two daughters. You can read some of her work at IG: @chantytown

It’s Not My Childhood

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It’s Not My Childhood


But I’ll remember it for you.
You gorged yourself on wild pears
Scarred apples picked from gnarled trees
Snakes lurked underfoot among the tall grasses
But you learned to eat your fear with screams,
Transformed it into ecstasy.
You had no use for quiet.
From brambly bushes you plucked the berries
that snapped sweet and tart in the mouth
staining the tongue, the teeth.
What you didn’t eat right there
Beneath the hungry yellow sky
You carried home in the loose hammock of your skirt
For your mother to cook down into jam.


photo showing artifacts from an abandoned house displayed in a forest

Curiosity: A love letter to abandoned houses by Monica Lacey