Monday, September 01, 2008

what's new in Canadian poetry?

Recent and Forthcoming Poetry Publications by Canadian Publishers

Sunday’s Ottawa Citizen featured its usual fall preview of upcoming books. the article featured fiction, non fiction, biography and memoir, but as usual, not a word was mentioned about upcoming poetry publications. i guess what burns me the most about the Citizen’s lack of coverage of poetry is that many of our citizens write poetry and a few have upcoming books. how is the Citizen accurately reflecting what goes on in Ottawa, if it neglects the publishing efforts of its residents? it makes no sense to me.

furthermore, you’d think a newspaper with an interest in encouraging literacy would be highly supportive of covering Canadian publishers, who are working hard to ensure Canadians have access to a variety of writing, including poetry. the Citizen’s unbalanced coverage of literature in its arts and books pages makes it look like Ottawa residents are interested only in current events and mystery novels. here’s a list of cross-Canada publishers and the poetry that has been recently or is about to be launched this fall.

to the Citizen’s credit, they recently started a books section (again very little poetry coverage, maybe the occasional review) and James Macgowan has a book blog; although it seems to focus on American popular fiction if the last few weeks are any indication (yes i did see a mention of the Tree Reading Series with George Murray as the feature).

those of us with an interest in finding out about current poetry in Canada need to send letters to the editor of our papers complaining about the lack of coverage. we need to blog about poetry, promote poetry and keep agitating. i’m so bored of reading about mystery novels in the Citizen, aren’t you? tell them.

there are likely more poetry collections being published in Canada in the 2008/2009 literary season. perhaps you can send me a comment if you know of additional books...

take a look at the list below and make sure to buy poetry this fall. and go to the calendar of literary events to find out about local launches such as Rhonda Douglas’s upcoming launch on September 17 at the Cube Gallery.


Broken Jaw Press, Fredericton, New Brunswick

Aquella luz, la que estremece / The Light that Makes Us Tremble, poetry by Nela Rio; Hugh Hazelton, translator.

Gaspereau Press, Kentville, Nova Scotia

The Muskwa Assemblage by Don McKay

Refrain for Rental Boat #4 by Tim Bowling

Goose Lane Editions, Frederiction, New Brunswick

I & I by George Elliott Clarke

Imperfect Penance by Mitchell Parry


Véhicule Press, Signal Poetry Editions

The Stream Exposed With All Its Stones, Collected Poems by D.G. JONES

Penny Dreadful by SHANNON STEWART

The Empire’s Missing Links by WALID BITAR

36 Cornelian Avenue by CHRISTOPHER WISEMAN

Snare Books

Variations on Hölderlin by Geoffery Hlibchuk

JACK by Mike Spry


Anansi Press, Toronto, Ontario

Jeremiah, Ohio by Adam Sol

Bookthug, Toronto, Ontario

Body of Text by Michael V. Smith and David Ellingsen

Every Way Oakly by Steve McCaffery

In Stereo by Paul Hegedus

Mal Arme: Letter Drop 3 by Victor Coleman and Paul Collins

Quixote Variations by Ramon Fernandez (Alfred Noyes, trans)

Tender Buttons by Gertrude Stein

The SubWay by Philip Quinn

This & That Lenin by Steven Zultanski

Welcome to Earth: Poem for Alien(s) by Amanda Earl

Brick Books, London, Ontario

Cypress by Barbara Klar

Noble Gas, Penny Black by David O'Meara

Breaker by Sue Sinclair

Coach House Books, Toronto, Ontario

Crabwise to the Hounds By Jeramy Dodds

Laundromat Essay By Kyle Buckley

What Stirs By Margaret Christakos

ECW Press, Toronto, Ontario

Reading the Bible Backwards by Robert Priest

wasps in a golden dream hum a strange music by Asher Ghaffar

Pedlar Press, Toronto, Ontario

Watermarks by Joanne Page

Wolsak and Wynn Publishers, Hamilton, Ontario

The Baltic Quintet: Poems from Estonia, Finland, Latvia, Lithuania and Sweden
by Edita Page

feria: a poempark by Oana Avasilichioaei

Sister Prometheus: Discovering Marie Curie by Douglas Burnet Smith

I can still draw by Heather Spears

Your Scrivener Press, Sudbury, Ontario

The Hole in the Wall, poems by Peter McEwen


Freehand Books, Calgary, Alberta

It’s Hard Being Queen: The Dusty Springfield Poems by Jeanette Lynes

NeWest Press, Edmonton, Alberta

Nightmarker by Meredith Quartermain

Signature Editions, Winnipeg, Manitoba

Some Days I Think I Know Things: The Cassandra Poems by Rhonda Douglas

Turnstone Press, Winnipeg, Manitoba

she walks for days inside a thousand eyes by Sharron Proulx-Turner

Fear Not by Maurice Mierau

British Columbia

Caitlin Press, Halfmoon Bay, BC

lan(d)guage a sequence of poetics By Ken Belford

A Well-Mannered Storm The Glenn Gould Poems By Kate Braid

Nightwood Editions, Gibsons Landing, BC

The Book Collector by Tim Bowling

Letters I Didn't Write by John MacKenzie

Little Hunger by Philip Kevin Paul

Talonbooks, Burnaby, BC

Kerrisdale Elegies by George Bowering

sublingual by bill bissett