Friday, August 31, 2012

Paul Dutton


The door avoids me, keeping to itself on the side I avoid what the door is keeping to this side of me beside the door beside myself behind a door avoiding me on the side that’s back before a door closed on a void inside an opening in or shut out door in front of more an opening out or shutting in a side before, behind, below a wall or floor a door is in a version of a room a door’s avoiding what’s behind it, keeping to itself the void that is avoided by a door’s averted opening on a corridor of doors closed upon a multitude of rooms enclosing multitudes of who or what avoids a door I’m on the other side of looking in or out upon a room a door has closed on who I am or was avoiding, closing in upon a void I am enclosing doors avoiding opening doors avoiding closing me into a void I am averse to opening closing doors, avoiding voids inside or out, disclosing nothing doors enclose so much as more than lies upon a floor a body’s pressed to in an attitude of listening or looking through a crack an open door creates in wishing more to be revealed to eyes that lie in wait beside a crack a door is opened by to view a room across a corridor a door across is open to eyes waiting where a room’s a void avoided and the one across the way is where desire awaits fulfillment in a void averted by a crack in time to catch a glimpse of just in time a wish fulfilled by an open door, desiring what or who is lying on the floor or on the bed upon the floor beside the open door desire rests on in an attitude of looking or listening to desire delayed or obviated by a door closing on an open wish fulfilled in rooms that lie open to what lies on the other side of lies on this side of that side is hidden where a hand upon a doorknob’s set to push or pull a door shut or open on a room where secrets lie in waiting for desire to be fulfilled or delayed within a multitude of rooms where multitudes lie, turning their backs on doors closing on secrets lying under layers of desire.

Paul Dutton is a poet, novelist, essayist, and oral sound artist living in Toronto. During his four-decade writing career he has performed, solo and ensemble, throughout Europe and the Americas, at international literary and music festivals, in concert halls, clubs, and schools, on radio, TV, film, and the Web. He was a member of the poetry performance group the Four Horsemen, and is in the free-improvisation band CCMC, among other music groups. The latest of his six books is the novel Several Women Dancing, and of his five solo recordings the CD Oralizations.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Leigh Nash


the bayonet, the blue grass at dawn, the sunset
sent like a dart. The crisp sheets, chipped shutters,
worn trails between house and barn, the porch light
left burning, the braying. The crying. The sound
of bees drinking honey. The sound of money.
The sound of being pushed up against the wall.

The barrel over the falls, cramped coal
chute dark as winter, the cur’s bone. The tannins,
the whitening irises. The whiskey-stained teeth,
the clattering teeth, china teacup atop a loose knee.
Paper curling like toenail, like horse tail. Swish.

Morning a bright, white picket fence: the rocket.
The red. But for the wall pushed up against.

Leigh Nash is a partner in the editing firm Re:word Communications, a publishing assistant with Coach House Books and a co-founder of The Emergency Response Unit, a chapbook press. Her first book of poetry, Goodbye, Ukulele, was published by Mansfield Press in 2010. She lives in Toronto.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Laura Farina


It was hot.
Much of the food was deep fried.

I got sunburned
while taking an architectural walking tour
of South Beach.

My toes in the sand
felt like stunted American worms
yearning to be free.
A man in a toll booth told me to have a blessed holiday.
A coconut fell from a coconut tree.

The sun turned the sky the colour of a mixed drink.
I watched a Montessori teacher smoke pot.

The thought occurred to me —
we are all dangling above the open mouth
of the ocean.
It was terrifying for a moment.

A cat jumped through a hoop that was on fire.
Shadows began to look like mouse ears.

When the radio came on,
someone had replaced the songs
with the sound of fish breathing.

I drank sea water until I felt ill.
I lost sunglasses in three historic buildings.
I ate key lime pie in moving vehicles.

In the darkness,
I thought I saw an alligator wink.

When the wind came up, the sand beat a hasty departure.

Floridians like loud shirts
and hair products that combat frizz.
They are an inventive people
when it comes to sorbet.
It’s amazing what they can do with animatronics.

The highway was a line between two oceans
and what was washed up on those beaches
was mine to keep.

All the diners were shiny
and inside them, people called me ma’am.
I became programmed to salivate
at the sound of ketchup bottles
hitting formica tables.

A cruise ship pulling out of port
seemed too large to float,
an island severed from its umbilical chord.

I never once thought about soup.

Laura Farina is the author of This Woman Alphabetical (Pedlar Press, 2005), winner of the 2006 Archibald Lampman Award. Her work has also appeared in This Magazine, Arc, and elsewhere. She lives in Vancouver, where she teaches creative writing to young people.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Niels Hav


You are really stupid
when you can kid yourself
into thinking you’re smarter
than the lacerated pedestrian
who screams with rage
ambushes himself with curses
and insults, because he has forgotten
his keys, his name
even his home address.

You know perfectly well where he lives.
Those are your shoes he walks around in.
It’s you he yells at,
it’s your name, it’s on the door.
Come on, let’s go home.

Translated by Heather Spears

Niels Hav is a full-time poet and short story writer living in Copenhagen with awards from the Danish Arts Council. His publications in English include We Are Here (Bookthug), and poetry and fiction in magazines including The Literary Review, Ecotone, Exile, The Los Angeles Review and PRISM International. In his native Danish, he is the author of six collections of poetry and three books of short fiction. His work has been translated into several languages, including Arabic, Turkish, Spanish and Chinese. He has travelled widely in Europe, Asia, and North and South America.

Heather Spears is a Canadian writer and artist living in Denmark. She has published four novels, twelve collections of poetry and three books of drawings. She has won many awards in Canada, including The Governor General’s Award for Poetry. Her latest collection, I can still draw (2008), was short-listed for the Pat Lowther Memorial Award. She travels widely and has drawn at many international festivals, and in hospitals in the Middle East, Europe and America.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Sandra Alland


The question is where were you sitting. The question is how did he enter the room. The question is how did the glass get in her hand. The question is how far away was your safety from his violence. The question is was that his blood on her jeans. The question is how did his friend walk in. So drunk. Past the barmaids.

The question is how did he speak. The question is were you two women sitting madly in love on a sofa. The question is did she refuse to answer. The question is how did his face get in the glass. The question is were you born here. The question is did he say something racist. The question has nothing to do with her boyish charm. Does it.

The question is where were you grieving. The question is how did he enter her future. Why they served him another. The question is the beloved. How the glass got all over her. The question is were you two women playing pool in love in a lesbian pub. The question is did she refuse to fuck him. The question is panic. Lack of breath.

The question is how did his hatred get on her skin. The question is how did his friend enter your nightmare. Do you speak English. The question is how far away was your joy from their rage. The question is were you two women in love. The question is were you two women.

Sandra Alland is a writer, performer and intermedia artist who lives in Edinburgh, Scotland. She is currently on a six-month hiatus/tour in North America with her poetry-music-video ensemble, Zorras. Sandra’s work has most recently been published and presented in Scotland, Germany, Netherlands, Spain and Italy. Her poetic love affair with voice-activated software, Naturally Speaking, will be published as a chapbook in autumn 2012 by Paperplates (Toronto). Other books include Proof of a Tongue (McGilligan, 2004), Blissful Times (BookThug, 2007), Here's To Wang (Forest Publications, 2009). Visit