Tuesday, November 29, 2005

the races

Recently published as a broadside with above/ground press. Ask them for it. This poem came out of time spent at the track during 2005.

these days I have no requisite for form
held fast to the hem of dust and amble, shifting on the outsides of my heels
    a smallness in my chest

I am making boxes

a child’s eyes fasten from the right, small tourniquets of wet
my skin, the dry weave of an envelope

bristle turns to sand
losses align, finger a pattern

these lazy hours force a ripening
fastidious faces worn into dust
kicked up antipodal,
the hooves of
broken beasts

here, no one cares for love
none but the long day's occupation
under the canopy of city

and the imagination that there are better places than this
more legitimate
or better words to take me there

are minced beneath the loam of my shoe

Friday, November 25, 2005

in transit ive

my mother threw my best work
in a trash bag
at the end of the
front lawn.
I watched it be picked
for several years
here, in this part of
my mind.
I imagine there were other
piled together,
heeps of them,
black pliable
these bags contained my childhood,
my well constructed essay
from high school sociology class
the nature of mass movements
now I can't remember who wrote the
damn book
that inspired

I see it
the nature of
recognizable faces
into same journeys,
fallen heads
shuffling inching dragging
things that must be done;
eyes darting

my cat's died
since then,
left on some farm
with my dog
(the one I kicked down the stairs once
when I was
angry at
to rot
give birth;
I dreamt their deaths were
quick, prayed
for power in the

the essay's
no longer read
I don't recall
and television
and books
and strangers
and walking
can not repair
or reinvent
the things left unexplained
to a
the masses must have
in this age
of forgiveness.
here, everything
can be reused and

here it is all

Thursday, November 24, 2005

stay within the line
keel, upon it
moving movers moved

the walls are falling

    there is line enough

it is a good year to die
and death
is wanted

we shall not see
the end
of this century

Monday, November 21, 2005

Blogs you need to visit, right now

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Daphne Marlatt, and IMPULSE magazine

I've been discovering even more little pieces of Daphne Marlatt's work found in old lit journals I've purchased here and there, all spanning from the 60's to present day. A recent purchase of the periodical Impulse, or (Imp)ulse Im(pulse) etc., that had its day in the 70's (founded in 1971 by Peter Such, also founding member of The Writers' Union of Canada, among other things), was a particularly rare gem to find. In it, I was pleased to hit upon the work of those I greatly admire, as well as some new identies, those of David UU (David "W"), bpNichol, Maxine Gadd, Frank Davey, Judith Copithorne, bill bissett, Nelson Ball, Victor Coleman, Joe Rosenblatt, Gerry Gilbert, David Dawson (one of the Vancouver "Tish" magazine boys), David Cull, and Daphne Marlatt.

Judith Copithorne blends the word and the stylized line, which looks something like taking a black ink callagraphic-type pen, cultivating a design, and inserting words, phrases, poems, within and beyond that structure. Unfortunately I can't locate any such designs on the web, but you should see what I'm seeing.

David UU wrote some dreamy stuff. Publisher jwcurry has printed some of his things and in fact I happen to have one of them, entitled "Elemental Journey", a 4-part series consisting of "I The Undines", "II The Gnomes", "III The Salamanders", "IV The Sylphs": excellently crafted little booklet too, of course, created with his publication "CURVD H&Z".

Well, I can't write about everyone. I have places to go, things to do, cake to make. So let me wrap up this post quickly, to return to it one day. A part of one of Daphne's Impulse poems:

Excerpt from FRAMES:

II shadows door are

morning's broken
ice wind a rap at the
window signals

I should get up to look at the
glassed-in tree

whose story begins
or mine) where

under quiescent leaves festered
things made new in the new year
shivers up to start does it?

angels are
made in snow with
flying arms, icicles
broken off shrouds

windows steam up

girls grow
sausages & pie
shape skirts, the boys
all sprout electric hair


While I'm here, you should all read some Lisa Robertson.

Friday, November 18, 2005

I found something that somewhat relates to that jwcurry reading a few weeks back. Picture this scene, except the man is smashing letters, not simply arranging some arbitrary collection to force a word. And, naked. This specific work is representative of the performance score "Imponderability" by Fernando Aguiar (his "what's your war?" series I find particularly interesting). I love the energy of a sound performance. Why aren't there more? I think I can answer that.

I think I'm going to see some real live "hoofing" tap dancers Saturday night. And only for $5! Some kind of tribute to the late Gregory Hines. He tapped his way into my heart in the film White Nights, with Mikail Barishnikov. What a movie.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Jack Spicer, Olson, and some things

"Culls become frozen orange
         juice. The best oranges are eaten."

     Jack Spicer

Another, and another.

Perhaps a response to W.C. Williams? :

A Red Wheelbarrow

Rest and look at this goddamned wheelbarrow. Whatever
It is. Dogs and crocodiles, sunlamps. Not
For their significance.
For their significant. For being human
The signs escape you. You, who aren't very bright
Are a signal for them. Not,
I mean, the dogs and crocodiles, sunlamps. Not
Their significance.

Oddly enough, Spicer also studied some of the theories of pre-Chomskian linguistics, which I just happen to be indulged in at the moment (my studies taking me further into the Chomsky stuff--as my prof likes to say, we're Chomskian babies). Makes sense some of my poetry contains such references and that I've always been drawn to such things quite naturally, as my reading tells me Spicer's work has, although I've yet to come across a poem of his referencing such morphemes. Combined with my affection for the Olson school of the projected line/form, the linking of perception rather than logic, the line as breath and utterance, and of poets that had been influenced by Blaser's presence at Vancouver's Simon Fraser University such as Daphne Marlatt (who incidentally I met this past spring; she's lovely, poetry's invincibly brilliant), Roy Miki (his new work seems really moving and beautious), Barry McKinnon (of that area in B.C. anyway, not sure if he's had any affiliation with that S.Fraser university crowd/school), and I've even been moved by some of George Bowering's poems, among others from that area (and, this is not a definitive list of what I read, just some of the west coasters that I think may have been influenced by that Black Mountain School of poetics)...I'm managing to move toward a personal poetic that may even itself out a bit in the coming months. I've been playing with many forms and have heard some wanting to refer to my poetry moving toward the confessional poetic, and others still think me rather an experimentalist, I've yet to choose either/or, or to forge an entirely distinct recognition within myself. If I happen to fall upon it, maybe I'll let you know. (but really, I can write whichever damn way I want.)

For now, I'll keep reading. It's the best thing any one poet can do, anyhow.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Three things

I'm taking a linguistics course. Thought it'd be interesting to observe more closely the deconstruct of language, considering it's essentially how my brain works. But no, of course not: the course is torture. Instead, it's filled with things like finite state machines, and GRAMMAR. By the way, "linguistic head" certainly isn't all it's cracked up to be.

Secondly, I'm working on a longer poetry piece right now. It's coming along. Maybe I'll give it to someone to publish, instead of publishing every damn thing myself. I have to relinquish control!

The local Concordia rag threw a poem of mine in it's creativity issue, out this week. Of course, they messed up the formatting. The end bracket that does not close has a very specific meaning. It's like adding an ellipses or something, but inside of another thought or an aside or a whisper; it's as if the poem continues on its own trajectory, as if its author lets it loose upon itself. As I've said before, the poem, if done well, constitutes an action (viscerally tangible or no) of folding in on itself and naturally contains a succession of gradients that can only be fully appreciated in multiple readings. As for the open bracket, here's an example, so you know what the hell I'm referring to:

Barry McKinnon's latest collection entitled The Centre (from the ever cool Talonbooks):


on these rocks
   you almost forget

( what is necessary

for a moment, the sun releases you. the imported
beer gets cold among the rocks

he says, 'write that New York steak is $4.39
      a lb.,
            & of things we all recognize'--I think

I want to go beyond all things, & sometimes sing

of nothing

I love you Barry McKinnon. Your poems are just great.
I'd be interested to know from whence the open bracket came. Anyone know? e.e.cummings maybe? Play with the west coast Canadian crew in the 60's, or Robert Duncan and Olson's group? Bernstein?

And lastly, StarTrek.com is just neat. This T-Shirt rocks. I don't have a damn clue what this one's about.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005


Another friend just got (secretly) married. I'm gonna die alone.

Congrats to Jena and Vinnie, you crazy kids.

In other news, I've taken my guitar out of dusty areas. Going to try to do something recording like with it this time. I have lots of ideas. Why is it none of those ideas ever make it to that stage where I want to share?

I'm told my Dad used to collect radios and radio parts when he was alive, like this one. My uncle is keeping one for me that looks slightly like this, but is twice the width. When I grow up and have a house like all the other big people, I can have it. I had a dream about a radio last night. My uncle Hartley was there. He works at the O'Connor mushroom farm in Hillsborough with uncle Grant. I love mushrooms.

Why isn't radio worth listening to anymore? All the magic and intellect has gone out of it. Why has entertainment (what passes for entertainment) replaced substance? People just want to be entertained, in spite of anything else. Value no longer has meaning. Kids can't even spell "moral" anymore.

Anyone know where I can buy a Victrola?

Thursday, November 03, 2005

I have a lot of pictures I need to get up here. This was taken by myself, in the back of Coach House of course, when I was down for the Toronto Small Press Bookfair last spring. I have pictures of that too. I'll be adding them soon, among others. Soon.

This is one of my favourite poems of bp's.

Dear Blahhhg

I cut the corners off my toast today. Brown toast has gross corners.

(All you can eat sushi is never a good idea.)

I live with two nice girls who are 10 years younger than me. They watch CSI every night. Is that normal? Since I really don't get the appeal to that show, would one say I've matured, like a cheese; I feel like I've been on the shelf. What the hell happened to good TV. What am I saying. Good TV? It's the beer. Damn those Belgians for making such sweet good beer stuff (even better IN Brussels, the little coffin bar off the main "Grand Place", especially). I didn't even order the damn cable. The last renter didn't cut it off or something, and now we're stuck, I'm stuck, with CSI watchers in my living room. I bought floor cushions, for sitting and playing board games and things, not for TV activity. Damn, I am an old cheese.

Today I bought new boots, without holes. I wore them in the kitchen while I made some food. They click click clacked all over the cheap linoleum. I think it's linoleum. How do you spell linoleum? They are white. I can go-go-go in them.

Today I missed my home. It drove right past me. I couldn't run that fast.

Poetry alludes me today. So, am reading about Stein's life. Wierd fact (for me): she once thought of a pen name of Jane Sands, which is awfully strange considering my pen name about 10 years ago was jane e. sand. Guess there aren't a lot of pen names out there.

The pens here have all dried out.

This season makes me sneeze.

This time it's really the weather.


I drew our lives on my leg this afternoon while you were swimming.

I was going to show you as you were toweling yourself off.

But something came up.


Later, my catalyst was this book.

It had your initials inside.

We didn't speak for hours.

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