Monday, February 14, 2005

A couple fine weekends have been rolling through; some fine visiting has been getting done. In particular, the whole sorry troop of us (part of the special few who studied Derrida under Murray "Sugar" McArthur back in the Waterloo days) managed not one, but two fine weekend excursions. The weather, in both cases, was resplendent. All credit for these pictures goes to the masterful Jon Bowman.

Nope, that's not posed...
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That tree is huge!
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That water is cold!
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A more sedate shot.
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Kingston is WAY cooler than Toronto.
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And, like the English geeks we are...
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Sunday, February 13, 2005

The Next Morning

My breath spills
as we unload the pickup: melted lamps,
burnt table legs, and Kenmore,
our old arthritic refrigerator.
I loved that cranky fridge,
grumbled me to sleep
many a quiet night.

There is no smell.
Maybe that’s the snow,
fallen over this place like
a thrown rug, intent
on hushing uneasy noises.

Our ancient grandfather clock is last,
cracked face still clouded with soot.
My hands' charcoal-smudges bloom deeper
as we heft the case and inner workings
over the side. The old coot never quite
kept time, but he sung deep.

Nestled between the sandy escarpment
and low hills, the trash looks like artwork, frozen.

Saturday, February 12, 2005

I pause, caught by their threads.

The daughters of the evening
lift their bristled, golden spears,
clash a soft and complicated dance,
and bow as the dark gods pass.

A cold, amethyst gust
rushes from behind the stars,
and reaching my clothes
pulls me apart,

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Dear Charles Simic,

Hi. I just wanted to say that your collection Walking the Black Cat made me think that poetry is cool again. Seriously, your book is pretty cool. I'm told that Pablo Neruda and Walt Whitman started you off, and I really like some of those novels by Gabriel Garcia Marquez... well, maybe that stuff is all unrelated, but I dig your style. It's tricky without being dumb, surreal without being pointless, and just all shaped and connected and it makes life feel mysterious and vivid. I kind of want to post the whole book page by page because it's so good and I want to share. Anyways, thanks. Maybe I'll go write some stuff too, and even if it's bad, it'll be something.


p.s. Oh, and I know artists kind of don't like being compared, but you create favorable associations in my head with Michael Ondaatje, who's sort of a longer, Canadian you. Cool, eh? Bye.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005


The tunnel of love at the fair.
The oompah band.
The long-legged drum majorette.
The pebble in my shoe.
Little birds sitting on the telephone wire.
Hotel of the Great Secret.
The out-of-tune piano.
Death, the butterfingered waiter.
The American lynch mob.
The Gypsy who slips me advice.
Moonlit and deserted parking lots.

(from Charles Simic's Walking the Black Cat)