Archive for February, 2010

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Publication: Granta [updated]

February 22, 2010

I have a new poem appearing at the Granta website this week. I’ll update this post with a proper link when it becomes available. There will also be an audio version on the site. Very pleased because Granta is one of my favourite literary magazines in the world.

The poem is up on the website now, with a recording of me reading the poem. Check it out!

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Anthology: Rogue Stimulus

February 11, 2010

A few weeks back I was asked to submit a poem to an “instant” anthology, a collection of protest poems targeting the Conservative government’s slap in the face of good taste and democracy here in Canada (do a Google news search for “prorogue”, if you’re outside the country and want to read about the minutiae of Canadian parliamentary procedure). I’d done  this before for 101 Poets Against the War, an instant anthology back in 2003 protesting the invasion of Iraq. Anyway, I thought the whole proroguing business was a nasty piece of work, a real bastardization of our “good government” by a man/party bent on creating a kind of “oppression fatigue” in which the populace goes through so many highs and lows of outrage and despair that they eventually become desensitized to further egregious acts for political reward. So I whipped up a shiv-like piece of doggerel and sent it along. That oughtta take care of it… But, lo and behold: Rogue Stimulus: The Stephen Harper Holiday Anthology for a Prorogued Parliament. Order yours today!

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Review: Canadian Literature

February 10, 2010

Almost three years later and The Rush to Here is still getting the scattered review. This time in Canadian Literature, which posts its reviews online before they come out in the print journal. Innovative and refreshing, that. Thankfully, it’s glowingly positive. There’s more at the Canadian Literature site here, and I’m lucky enough to be reviewed with some poets I greatly respect and admire, including Alice Burdick and Rachel Zolf. I don’t know the fourth poet, Neil Aitken, but I will check out his book soon enough.

George Murray’s the rush to here features a photo on a helicopter pad (X marks the spot) done as a sequence of six (a sextych?)—the gaps reflected in the design of the section breaks, each marked by the same set of six small rectangles, in the shape of the images, but now rendered blank.  It is as if the picture puzzle pieces have become interstices.  The design is excellent.  A very pleasant book to have and to hold.  The poems have such a maturity of vision, many on the passing of time, that it’s startling to note the author is still in his thirties.  Some of the poems are allusive, with mention of astronomers, philosophers, literary theorists, muses, but well contextualized and engaging.  “A Moment’s Autograph” won the Gertrude Stein Award for Innovation in Poetry.  The loose sonnet form allows much.  Children, God, Loss, Memories are evoked through sneakily thought provoking questions and insights, as well as arresting final couplets.