Written on the centenary of Canadian painter Tom Thomson's mysterious death, this book consists of reflections upon twenty-two of Thomson's paintings. Each reflection stands on its own as a two-page word-image, imitating the concise intensity of Thomson's famous 22 by 27 cm sketches, examining creativity, authenticity, and identity in life. A further twenty-two vignettes flesh out the genderless alter ego that Hughes names TT, an irreverent nonconformist following a free-spirited way of life only very loosely based on Thomson. As the book progresses, TT takes on mythic proportions, and Hughes' language becomes more poetically challenging for the task at hand.
Meticulously researched by the author for accurate detail, Hughes also has 40 years of intimate familiarity with the lakes and hills where Thomson lived. In TT, a Canadian figure emerges along the lines of Gary Snyder and Henry David Thoreau.