Monday, April 29, 2013

David W. McFadden


My eyes are like a truck of pomegranates
or like a pair of rowboats on the pond,
sweeter than grapes or pears on a tree —
how I'd live without them I'd like to know
or better still I wouldn't want to know.
My thumb-like eyes encompass multitudes.
Friends who have passed away I cannot see
but there are others glad to take their place.

On the street my eyes see many eyes
and occasionally a pair will latch onto mine.
My eyes will sometimes see something I saw
yesterday and then again today.
I'll see you tomorrow as we like to say
but I think our eyes don't really go that way.

David W. McFadden is the author of nearly 40 books of poetry, fiction, and non-fiction, most recently Mother Died Last Summer (Mansfield Press, 2013) and What's the Score? (Mansfield Press, 2012), which has been shortlisted for the 2013 Canadian Griffin Poetry Prize, his second such shortlisting. Other books include Why Are You So Sad? Selected Poems of David W. McFadden (Insomniac Press, 2007), Why Are You So Long and Sweet? Collected Long Poems of David W. McFadden (Insomniac Press, 2010), and Be Calm, Honey (Mansfield Press, 2009). David lives in Toronto.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Oded Carmeli


Great grand daddy, you sneaky bastard, you

Who are just just you who are just just who are you

Great grand daddy, who did the world war

In the World War?

Great grand daddy, in the World War

The world warred

The Second World War

Great grand daddy, in the World War

Warred the world the second world

And won

Great grand daddy, you sneaky bastard, you

Who are now justified by now you are justified by who

Great grand daddy, the scales are even

Great grand daddy, even the scales are even?

Great grand daddy, even the scales even

Other scales

Which do not even even

A Great grand daddy

Translated by Maayan Eitan.

Oded Carmeli is an Israeli poet, editor and journalist. He is the author of a novel and two collections of poetry, the most recent of which is The Universe Has No Opposition (2010, Achuzat Bayit Books), and the founder and editor of Hava LeHaba poetry magazine. Oded lives in Tel Aviv.

Maayan Eitan was born in 1986 in Jerusalem, Israel. She is a PhD student in the department of comparative literature at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Pearl Pirie


I opened the trunk and saw
that against my wishes you are
again keeping river trout
in the basement of our car.

the basin of the underbody tank
thinly swayed with dorsal fins.
towards the light and shallows
of the carpet one trout was stiff.

I thought it was dead. its eyes
were closed. when I lifted it back
to the water, it slowly reanimated,
blinked, then shifted its peduncle.

with a caterpillar's grace it came,
pectoral fins as elbows sauntering
towards me. then we saw on the
thick liquorice lip of the trunk

the bat examining us. no, it was
a Curl-Crested Manucode Bird
of Paradise, his long trachea fluting.
he began to puff his mating hop.

the trout's eyes widened, pulling
back bewildered, commando-crawling
backwards towards seats, windshield,
the sanctity of the all-trout-world.

Pearl Pirie has coordinated the Tree Seed Workshop Series in Ottawa since 2009. been shed bore (Chaudiere, 2010) and Thirsts (Snare, 2011) for completists are complemented by chapbooks published by Corrupt Press, AngelHouse Press, above/ground, and obvious epiphanies press. She runs phafours micropress, which is currently looking for squirrelly poems, in one sense or another. Visit

Friday, April 12, 2013

Jason Heroux


It’s easy to breathe if you’re breathing
breathe all you want the air is too old
               and weak to run away
your life is a gift with your name on it
your life is a word there’s no word for
breathe all you want it’s easy to breathe
               if you’re breathing
the air is an all-you-can-breathe buffet
it’s hard work cheering up sad machines
it’s hard work cleaning a number’s cage
all your heartbeats are amazing staples
               holding you together
birds sing like kettles boiling song-water
your life is a gift with your name on it
and your life is a word there’s no word for
breathe all you want breathe all you want

Jason Heroux is the author of three poetry collections, Memoirs of an Alias, Emergency Hallelujah, and Natural Capital (all from Mansfield Press), and the novella Good Evening, Central Laundromat (Quattro Books). He lives in a house in Kingston. He takes out garbage every Tuesday. His most recent publication is the poetry chapbook In Defence of the Attacked Center Pawn (Puddles of Sky Press).

Monday, April 1, 2013

Jim Smith


By Gandalf’s shoes cese la represión!
On alternate Tuesdays cese la represión!
Using French declensions cese la represión!
You who knew me cese la represión!
In black ink only cese la represión!
Loblaws has a sale on cese la represión!
Whoever walks down Atlantic Avenue cese la represión!
Earwigs, raccoons, dumpers of the garbage cans cese la represión!

Ocean liners shaped like dead men cese la represión!
Turning the ignition cese la represión!
My dog loves black dogs cese la represión!
And I love all dogs cese la represión!

Cese la represión is back for another season!
Óscar Romero’s cese la represión!

Jim Smith’s Back Off, Assassin! New and Selected Poems (Mansfield Press) was longlisted for the 2010 Governor General’s Award for Poetry, and hit #7 on the Chapters/Indigo 14 Best Poetry Books for National Poetry Month 2010. During Jim’s visit with antipoet Nicanor Parra in Las Cruces, Chile, in February 2012, Nicanor advised him that translation is “treason.” In 61 years, Smith has published some 15 books and chapbooks of poetry, ran a small literary magazine and press, went to law school late and litigates for a living in Toronto. His most recent book is Happy Birthday, Nicanor Parra (Mansfield Press, 2012).