January 18, 2006

splitting kindling with a bad axe

It’s a small motion but shipped in
from a long way off. The log is always
local but the iron old. Lines in the grain
work against the classic pose—you either
cohabitate or battle the common prose. I’m neither
here nor there but greening in my way. The handle
is key—a woodcutter taught me that
in 1741—for the feel of it, looking for the way
in, unforced, keen. My handle is too straight so the line
leads me to compensate. The cut is radical sustainability
in the overcode. If the blade
turns, shift the shoulders with it. Branch incursions
are just other books waiting to be written. The wood
is prime mover and the snap sound is the event
horizon of language.

January 8, 2006


the north-central interior plateau of bc:

"a continuous, self-vibrating region of intensities whose development avoids any orientation toward a culmination point or external end. ... any multiplicity connected to other multiplicities by superficial underground stems in such a way as to form or extend a rhizome." (Deleuze and Guattari, A Thousand Plateaus 22)

January 7, 2006

to and fro st.

nonhuman emanation,
unfeeling its crust
and filigree
singe the edge
off and cause
words to slip

supple inside the crisp
leaves see blooms
and myth
in crinoline flourishes

eyes melt
the ghosts of
the inanimate street

January 4, 2006

Irving Layton 1912-2006

One of Canada's pioneer poets, Irving Layton, passed away on January 4th, 2006. To read more about Layton, his poetry, and his life go here.

"If poetry is like an orgasm, an academic can be likened to someone who studies the passion-stains on the bedsheets."--Irving Layton

January 3, 2006

Music of the Heartland

I am from Winnipeg. I am at least a quarter prairie boy (the other parts being city boy, northern boy, book boy and mall boy). If you are from Winnipeg and at all cool, you will be a fan of the Weakerthans. They represent so much that is endemic to boys from prairie cities: sweet, angst-ridden, creative, sensitive, leftist, aimless, and ineffectual. Their three albums are filled with lost boy anthems and contain lyrics with a flair for the poetic. "We write the only songs we know how to write: songs that reflect the place we come from, musically and geographically, the community we live in, and the struggle for any one person to connect with another in a meaningful way," says lyricist John Samson. Comprised of Stephen Carroll (guitar, backing vocals), John K. Samson (guitar, lead vocals), John Sutton (bass, backing vocals), and Jason Tait (drums, saw, etc.) The Weakerthans began playing together in 1997 in Winnipeg, Canada.

My favourite line is from “Aside” on Left and leaving: “And I'm leaning on a broken fence between Past and Present tense.” Here is some lyrics from “The Reconstruction Site” from their last album: “I'm lost. I'm afraid. A frayed rope tying down a leaky boat to the roof of a car on the road in the dark, and it's snowing . . . I broke like a bad joke somebody's uncle told at a wedding reception in 1972, where a little boy under a table with cake in his hair stared at the grown-up feet as they danced and swayed.” John Samson is an accomplished poet aside from his song lyrics.

Visit their user-friendly website and help me bring them to Prince George!

January 1, 2006