Monday, August 18, 2014

derek beaulieu: Epcor Centre for the Performing Arts Artist-in-Residence

Calgary poet laureate derek beaulieu has been named the inaugural Artist-in-Residence at Calgary's Epcor Centre for the Performing Arts. Congratulations derek!

The residency begins tomorrow and runs through October 24, 2014. He plans to be "working on a series of text-art pieces and hosting a number of events."

See his blog post describing further details, here.

Friday, August 15, 2014

new from above/ground press: Wintering Prairie, by Megan Kaminski

Wintering Prairie
Megan Kaminski
$4



Snow drifts the prairie white
each gathering a prayer a knife a candle
water crystalline seeding warmth
ground expectant bootfall above sod below
the ground between us the ground we share
ground that sprouts green that holds roots deep
soft porous mealy with bug and vole
and this poem will be a long one
will widen will drift like snow
like language like dribbles and artic chill
will stretch to Dakota fox alone in the field
to field mice buried deep
will follow the compass’s pull magnetic north
oil in shale beneath us tallgrass roots beneath us
bodies of fathers and mothers beneath us
the sod the Kanza-call the warmth of snow on this day
will stretch north to you and children by the fire
to pipelines and trains and fractures in bedrock
to artic-alpine fingernail clam and mourning cloak
will carry me wrapped in sound breath encased
published in Ottawa by above/ground press
August 2014
a/g subscribers receive a complimentary copy

Megan Kaminski’s
first book of poetry is Desiring Map (Coconut Books, 2012). She is also the author of seven chapbooks. Her current work Deep City explores the body and the city as architectures in crisis. She teaches creative writing and literature at the University of Kansas and curates the Taproom Poetry Series in downtown Lawrence.

Originally produced in an edition of 100 copies as part of the dusie kollektiv, February 2014.

To order, send cheques (add $1 for postage; outside Canada, add $2) to: rob mclennan, 2423 Alta Vista Drive, Ottawa ON K1H 7M9 or paypal at www.robmclennan.blogspot.com

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

new from above/ground press: Concatenations, by Andy Weaver

Concatenations
Andy Weaver
$4


  concatenations
           dictate
                 easy
           figurations
             gaudy
           highlights
            invest
              jerkwater
            kaleidoscopic
              lexemes
     mit
             noesis
         obliquely
             prehending
quodammodotative
              reality
         sublimely
           traced
           unbreachable
               varsal
               worlds
              x-irradiated
            yestern
            zeitgeists
        alwise
            bedevilling


****
published in Ottawa by above/ground press
August 2014
a/g subscribers receive a complimentary copy

Andy Weaver
has published two books of poetry, Were the bees (NeWest, 2005) and Gangson (NeWest, 2011). He teaches contemporary poetry and poetics at York University.

This is his fifth above/ground press publication and third chapbook publication, after Three Ghazals to the constellation Corvus (The Crow) (2001) and Other Work for your Hands (2004).

[Andy Weaver launches Concatenations as part of the above/ground press twenty-first anniversary event, reading with Anita Dolman and Jason Christie, on Thursday, August 14, 2014]

To order, send cheques (add $1 for postage; outside Canada, add $2) to: rob mclennan, 2423 Alta Vista Drive, Ottawa ON K1H 7M9 or paypal at www.robmclennan.blogspot.com

Monday, August 11, 2014

Brecken Hancock's above/ground chapbook, The Art of Plumbing, is reviewed in Broken Pencil #64



Scott Bryson was good enough to review Brecken Hancock’s above/ground chapbook, The Art of Plumbing (above/ground press, 2013) in Broken Pencil #64. Thanks, Scott! This is actually the fifth review of Brecken’s chapbook, after recent reviews by Joseph LaBine (here), JM Francheteau (here), Michael Dennis (here) and Ryan Pratt (here). There are a few copies of Hancock’s chapbook still available, here, or you can simply pick up her first trade collection, Broom Broom (Coach House Books, 2014), which also includes the piece.
Plumbing, let alone the history of plumbing, is not typically considered enticing subject matter. The recounting of ancient pipes that’s presented here – organized in date-stamped anecdotes – is mostly pretext, mercifully (though even when it’s not, these anecdotes are rarely mundane).
            At its core, Brecken Hancock’s The Art of Plumbing is a study of human relationships, some mythical, through time – between family members, men and women, husbands and wives, citizens and The Church. In 1183 BCE, “Clytemnestra guts Agamemnon in the bath,” for his infidelities. In 415 CD, “anxious that nudity nurtures licentiousness, early Christian fathers preach against public bathing.”
            Bathtubs and bathing are the most consistent fixtures in this timeline, and an anecdote from 2323 BCE seems particularly relevant to its undercurrent: “Archimedes stumbles into a method for gauging the volume of irregular objects. Stepping into the bath, he spots water rise…” The lesson typically taken from this tale is to be patient and await a breakthrough, but a different interpretation here proves apt. The same story was relayed at a crucial point in the 1998 movie, Pi, with an unusual take on its moral: “You need a break, you have to take a bath or you will get nowhere,” warns the film’s mathematician Sol Robson.
            In a moment of abrupt, autobiographical lucidity at the chapbook’s end, Hancock comes to the same conclusion: “I need to soak. Gathering my split hair from the pillow, I ruse from the television news, from the navalia proelia [simulated naval battles] on our sheets.” It’s a fitting conclusion; there are hints of a veiled personal journal throughout this narrative.
            The Art of Plumbing is a moving read, less for what we see on the pages – though these are eloquently-written historical sketches – than for the subtext that emerges from between its stanzas.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

STANZAS magazine, bibliography: 1993-2006



Perhaps I should finally admit that my long poem magazine STANZAS is in the past tense. I’d long been hoping that the journal would make it to fifty issues, but that doesn’t seem to have happened. Although I haven’t given up the idea that I might produce one further, final issue as a trade anthology, keeping with the model the journal originally had of George Bowering’s twice a year IMAGO (1964-1974).

When I originally started above/ground press, I wanted to produce both magazine and chapbooks, and couldn’t imagine attempting to sell two different series; the idea was that if I had the journal as gratis, then it might help publicize the chapbooks, therefore the far larger print runs. I could mail a box of issues to anyone, anywhere (which happened far less than I would have liked, given the state of my finances) for distribution.

Over the past few months, thanks to our move last year into a house, I’ve been finally able to start digging through dozens of boxes, attempting to put together a single set of the whole run for possible inclusion as a perk for our big Chaudiere Books Indiegogo campaign (I’m hoping to add one or three items over the next week or so, to acknowledge the mid-way point of our current campaign). There are some issues I have a surprising number of copies of, still, and some that I have yet to locate. For the sake of interest, here is a rough bibliography of the entire run:

Volume 1, issue #1. edited by rob mclennan. 500 copies. November 1993. issue dedicated to George Bowering and IMAGO. “Garden I-V” and “Gardening Tips” by Clare Latremouille, “THE LAPIDARY 1-9” by Heather Ferguson (sic), “Where Once There Were 5 Million” by Joy Hewitt Mann, and “Brahms, 1993” for Henry Beissel by rob mclennan. distributed free. folded and stapled, 8 1/2 by 11. 12 pages.
Issue #2. 500 copies, January 1994. issue dedicated to Frank Zappa. “VIGIL” by Maggie Helwig. distributed free. 16 pages.
Issue #3. 500 copies, May 1994. issue dedicated to Roy Kiyooka. “DON JUAN ON HIS DEATHBED” by Henry Beissel. distributed free. 8 pages.
Issue #4. 500 copies, October 1994. “Sketches of Hands” by Shannon Cowan, “Forgotten Photographs” by Colin Morton, “hockey night in canada,” for patrick hunt, by michael dennis. distributed free. 16 pages.
Issue #5. larger print run, 750 copies, April 1995. Coast-to-coast issue. 650 sandstone covers for general distribution, 100 grey covers for the Spring Toronto Small Press Fair. “Echolocations” by Gil McElroy and “In Which Alice Meets Laura Palmer” by Stephanie Bolster. distributed free. 12 pages.
Issue #6. 750 copies, July/August 1995. issue gleefully dedicated to George Bowering’s IMAGO magazine from the 70’s. “stiltman” by C.J. Lockett, “love & the automatic bank teller” by Brian Burke. distributed free. 12 pages.
Issue #7. 750 copies, November 1995. “When” by rob mclennan & “REMEMBERING FRANK O'HARA” by Ken Norris. distributed free. 20 pages.
Issue #8. 750 copies, May 28, 1996. “The Big Fuck” by Judith Fitzgerald and “HOW TO SPEND MOST OF YOUR TIME ALONE AND STILL WRITE CONVINCINGLY ABOUT SEX” by R.M. Vaughan. distributed free. 12 pages.
Issue #9. 750 copies, August 1, 1996. this issue mourns the loss of Coach House Press 1965-1996 and first saw light at the first National Conference of Canadian Small and Micro Presses in Sechelt, B.C., August 2-4, 1996. “MOUTH or PLACE NAMES” by Ian Whistle. His first solo publication. distributed free. 12 pages.
Issue #10. 750 copies, October 1996. “Crashing Out” by I.M. Wiley, a(n obvious) pseudonym from Winnipeg. the same piece (slightly altered) was also published at the same time under another name in Zygote magazine, Winnipeg. distributed free. 12 pages. 76.
Issue #11. 750 copies, February 1997. “Re: Crossing” by Colin Morton and “Ferries Taken” by Aidan Baker. distributed free. 12 pages.
Issue #12. 750 copies, April 1997. “BLONDES ON BIKES: 1-20” by George Bowering. distributed free. 28 pages.
Issue #13. 750 copies, June 1997. “inside     first floor         at the randomization factory” by meghan lynch (who later became Meghan Jackson). distributed free. 12 pages. cover image by Emily Whist.
Issue #14. 750 copies, September 1997. “A Medical History of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan” by Carla Milo (who later became Carla Barkman). distributed free. 16 pages.
Issue #15. 750 copies, March 1998. “last leaves II” by rob mclennan. distributed free. 12 pages.
Issue #16. 750 copies, April 1998. “POEM BOOOOOOOK” by Gerry Gilbert. cover photos by the author. distributed free. 28 pages.
Issue #17. 750 copies, May 1998. “from COAST ALL JOURN ALL” by Jay MillAr. published in Ottawa (at Carleton University and at Gallery 101) and Fredericton (at Gallery Connexion). distributed free. 16 pages. cover illustration by the author.
Issue #18. 750 copies, September 1998. “TWELVE POEMS FOR HUMAN BUTTERFLIES” by Greg Evason. distributed free. 16 pages. cover illustration, “The Sacral Butterfly,” by Nicholas Power.
Issue #19. 750 copies, February 1999. “t sea ache” by Joe Blades. distributed free. 20 pages.
Issue #20. 750 copies, May 1999. “Eulogistics” by Victor Coleman. released in Winnipeg, May 8, 1999. distributed free. 16 pages.
Issue #21. 750 copies, October 1999. “this evidence against you” by Natalie Hanna. distributed free. 24 pages.
Issue #22. 750 copies, January 2000. “an unnatural history of the sexes” by Anne Stone. originally appeared in the Contemporary Feminist Baroque issue of Tessera. distributed free. 12 pages.
Issue #23. 1000 copies, March 2000 date, although not published until April 9. “cooleys key” by rob mclennan. “renga” page originally appeared in mo’ gumbo. distributed free. 16 pages.
Issue #24. 750 copies, May 2000. “Aequanimitas” by Chris McCreary. sections originally appeared in Lost & Found Times, Rhizome and COMBO. distributed free. 20 pages.
Issue #25. July 2001. “further revisions” by ryan fitzpatrick. cover artwork by Emily Whist. 16 pages. $4.
Issue #26. 750 copies, March 2001. “SYNONYMS FOR FISH” by Gary Barwin. three poems, “SYNONYMS FOR FISH”, “CRUMB FALL” and “THE LOOKOUT MAN”. cover image by Joe Blades, signed “for mclennan, the only poet I know whose name is in magnetic poetry 8, 15 NOV 1998.” distributed free. 12 pages.
Issue #27. 750 copies, April 2001. “summations : travels through Italy” by Helen Zisimatos. two long poems, “rome” and “siena”. distributed free. 34 pages.
Issue #28. 750 copies, August 2001. “Strange Days” by Paul Hardacre. cover artwork collage by rob mclennan. distributed free. 16 pages.
Issue #29. 750 copies. “what exile   this” by nathalie stephens (now Nathanaël). distributed free. 28 pages.
Issue #30. 750 copies. “Continuations I-III” by Douglas Barbour and Sheila E. Murphy. distributed free. 24 pages.
Issue #31. 750 copies. “Meteor Showers” by Gil McElroy. distributed free. 16 pages.
Issue #32. 1000 copies, “irregular heartbeats” by rob mclennan. distributed free. 12 pages.
Issue #33. 1000 copies, “The Museum of Perception” by Lisa Samuels. subtitled “American takeover issue.” distributed free. 16 pages.
Issue #35. 1000 copies, “Highway 99” by Meredith Quartermain. subtitled “10th anniversary issue.” distributed free. 8 2 x 7. pages
Issue #36. 1000 copies, “all sets go” by Daniel f. Bradley. distributed free. 20 pages.
Issue #37. 1000 copies, “Americasual” by Rob Budde. distributed free. 20 pages
Issue #38. 1000 copies, “calcite gours 1-19” by derek beaulieu. distributed free.
Issue #39. 1000 copies, “Dream Songs” by J.L. Jacobs. distributed free.
Issue #40. 1000 copies, “the naked & the nude” by Rachel Zolf. distributed free. 20 pages.
Issue #41. 1300 copies, “ottawa poems (blue notes)” by rob mclennan. distributed free.
Issue #42. 1000 copies, “personal peripherals 1-30” by Jan Allen. distributed free.
Issue #43. 1000 copies, “more fun with ‘pataphysics” by Sharon Harris. distributed free.
Issue #44. 1000 copies, “THE CELEBRITY RAG; Opá” by Stan Rogal. March 2006. distributed free.
Issue #45 (mis-numbered on cover as #44). 1000 copies. April 2006. “two poems” by Dennis Cooley. distributed free.