Thursday, July 26, 2007

In response to a poety friend...

Some time a while back... Paul Vermeersch wrote:

If you had to pick one, what would you say is your favorite Canadian poem?

I know it's hard to pick one, but please try. 




1. In Flanders Fields by Lieutenant John McCrae

Why? (You didn`t ask but why not?) My Grandfather was injured in the war ( a Brit fighting for the Canadian Army) and was a cranky old devil because he had shot coming out of his legs even when he was in his seventies.  But I can`t forget him...he was tough and a real man (fit, moustache, glint in eye)

2. Cremation of Sam Mcgee by Robert Service (Is he Canadian?)

Why? (This is a pretty good sales pitch for why all them limeys came to Canada in the first place in search of gold and adventure, eh, wha?)

3. Suzanne by Leonard Cohen

(Montreal, 1986, 19 years old and long blond hair... just a valley boy in the big city...)

There a few good poems in ATLAS including one by 'the cock' and Kim Morrissey and fellow named Swift, Todd. But the Heather Spears sketches are the best.


Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Magic man... Poet?

The marketing of name , an errant, rob mclennan's eleventh book (but first in the UK) is clever in terms of theatre or spectacle. According to Douglas Barbour: Canada's 'mad pilgrim' crisscross(es) the prairies (and Eire) examining the unravellings of culture and 'writing down sand.' Hmmm. Wait now, isn't that more like a magician or a conjurer? Look, I'm not takin' the mick here. I like that quote. I wish someone would call me a mad pilgrim poet; it makes me think of a true sage, a wandering nomad. But there you go. Not everyone can have 'a handle' though some poets need one, no? But wait. Is this poetry as entertainment? (A novel concept, no?) Why didn't someone think of that?

The book is a travelogue of sorts and very good in the sense that the poems seem to be jotted down on the road across Canada (etc.) quick to get the mood of the moment in cafes and airport lounges. There are no sentimental musings of past loves or over wrought 'if only' or 'what ifs?' After all, when you are on the trot the world is a strangely exhilarating place:

' nothing more frightening to a 14 year old boy than a 14 year old girl...'
This is true, no?


Monday, July 16, 2007

Loose Party (fun times)

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Openned Anthology

Openned anthology takes place on Wednesday 1st August at 7.15pm in the basement of The Foundry on Great Eastern Street, London EC1 (nearest tube: Old Street).

Confirmed readers:

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