Monday, March 30, 2020

natalie hanna, Chris Banks, Kayla Czaga, David Koehn + Melissa Eleftherion : the virtual reading series #12

a series of video recordings of contemporary poets reading from their work, prompted by the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent cancellations, shut-downs and isolations; a reading series you can enjoy in the safety of your own protected space,

natalie hanna : “deep light (i),” “the year that nothing turned”

natalie hanna is an Ottawa lawyer working with low income populations. her writing focusses on feminist, political, and personal themes. She is the past Administrative Director of the Sawdust Reading Series and served on the board of Arc Poetry Magazine. She is the author of ten chapbooks, three with above/ground press, and an eleventh is forthcoming with Baseline Press in the Fall of 2020. Her poetry and interviews have been published in Canada and the U.S. Her poem “light conversation” received Honourable Mention in ARC Magazine’s 2019 Diana Brebner Prize. hanna runs battleaxe press, a small poetry press in Ottawa. Find her online at:

Chris Banks : “Resemblances”

Chris Banks is a Canadian poet and author of five collections of poems, most recently Midlife Action Figure by ECW Press 2019. His first full-length collection, Bonfires, was awarded the Jack Chalmers Award for poetry by the Canadian Authors' Association in 2004. He is an associate editor for The New Quarterly and poetry editor of The Miramichi Reader.

Kayla Czaga : “Finnish Schooling” and “Goodbye Kyla”

Kayla Czaga is the author of two collections of poetry—For Your Safety Please Hold On (Nightwood Editions, 2014) and Dunk Tank (House of Anansi, 2019). You can find out more about her at or @kaylaczaga on twitter.

David Koehn : “Delta 1: What We Called Pickleweed Was Everywhere,” “Delta 11: We’ve Heard Rumors the Water Hyacinth Was So Thick,” “Scatterplot: In a Family Room Of a House Where a Three-Year-Old Is Raising His Parents”

David Koehn’s Scatterplot was published by Omnidawn in Spring 2020. His chapbook Coil (University of Alaska, 1998), won the Midnight Sun Chapbook Contest. His first full-length manuscript, Twine (Bauhan Publishing, 2013), won the May Sarton Poetry Prize. David co-edited Compendium (Omnidawn Publishing, 2017), a text offering Donald Justice’s original syllabus on prosody. David holds an MFA from the University of Florida, a Bachelors in Creative Writing from Carnegie Mellon, an M.Ed (TFA) from the University of Alaska. David’s writing appears in a range of magazines including Prairie Schooner, Gargoyle, Hotel Amerika, Kenyon Review, New England Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, Volt, Carolina Quarterly, Diagram, McSweeney’s, The Greensboro Review, North American Review, and many others.

Melissa Eleftherion : “in the skinned phylum,” “kletic”and “her story is my story is your story”

Melissa Eleftherion is a writer, a librarian, and a visual artist. She is the author of field guide to autobiography (The Operating System, 2018), & nine chapbooks, including little ditch (above/ground press, 2018) & trauma suture (above/ground press, 2020). Born & raised in Brooklyn, Melissa created, developed, and currently co-curates The Poetry Center Chapbook Exchange with Elise Ficarra. She now lives in Northern California where she manages the Ukiah Library, teaches creative writing, & curates the LOBA Reading Series. Recent work is available at

Saturday, March 28, 2020

Noah Eli Gordon, Arielle Greenberg, Jean Marc Ah-Sen, Fiona Tinwei Lam + Eleonore Schönmaier : virtual reading series #11

a series of video recordings of contemporary poets reading from their work, prompted by the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent cancellations, shut-downs and isolations; a reading series you can enjoy in the safety of your own protected space,

Noah Eli Gordon : “Social Distancing”

Noah Eli Gordon is the author of a dozen books, including the recent collection Is That the Sound of a Piano Coming from Several Hoses Down?, which the New York Times called “absurdist flash fiction, disrupting reality through juxtaposition.” Find Gordon’s poem and a process note here:

Arielle Greenberg : “‘Made by Maid’ is My Favorite Song by Laura Marling and I Want to Crawl Inside It and You, Too.”

Arielle Greenberg’s previous poetry collections are Slice, My Kafka Century and Given. She’s also the writer of the creative nonfiction book Locally Made Panties, the transgenre chapbooks Shake Her and Fa(r)ther Down, and co-author, with Rachel Zucker, of Home/Birth: A Poemic. She has co-edited three anthologies, including Gurlesque, forthcoming in an expanded digital edition co-edited with Becca Klaver. Arielle’s poems and essays have been featured in Best American Poetry, Labor Day: True Birth Stories by Today’s Best Women Writers and The Racial Imaginary, among other anthologies. She wrote a column on contemporary poetics for the American Poetry Review, and edited a series of essays called (K)ink: Writing While Deviant for The Rumpus. A former tenured professor in poetry at Columbia College Chicago, she lives with her family in Maine, where she writes, edits, teaches and works for a creative services agency.

Jean Marc Ah-Sen : “Ah-Sen and I”

Jean Marc Ah-Sen is the Toronto-based author of In the Beggarly Style of Imitation and Grand Menteur. The National Post has called his work “an inventive escape from the conventional.” He lives with his wife and two sons.

Fiona Tinwei Lam : “Ode to Chopsticks”

Fiona Tinwei Lam is the author of Intimate Distances (finalist for the City of Vancouver Book Prize), Enter the Chrysanthemum, and a new poetry collection, Odes & Laments (Caitlin Press, fall 2019).  She also authored the illustrated children’s book, The Rainbow Rocket. Her poetry, fiction and non-fiction have been published in over thirty anthologies (Canada, Hong Kong, and the US), including The Best of the Best Canadian Poetry in English (Tenth Anniversary Edition).  Her poems have been featured  twice on local transit as part of B.C.’s Poetry in Transit.  She is a co-editor of and contributor to the creative nonfiction anthology, Double Lives: Writing and Motherhood published by McGill-Queen’s University Press, and also the editor of The Bright Well, a collection of contemporary Canadian poetry about facing cancer.   She and Jane Silcott have co-edited the creative nonfiction and poetry anthology, Love Me True: Writers Reflect on the Ins, Outs, Ups & Downs of Marriage. Her poetry videos have been screened at festivals locally and internationally. She teaches at Simon Fraser University (Continuing Studies).

Eleonore Schönmaier : “Let Us Be,” “Weightless” (from Wavelengths of Your Song) and “What Gets Blown In” (from Wavelengths of Your Song)

Eleonore Schönmaier’s collection Wavelengths of Your Song (McGill-Queen's University Press) will be published in German translation in September 2020 in time for the Frankfurt Book Fair (with Canada as the guest country). She is also the author of Dust Blown Side of the Journey (MQUP) and Treading Fast Rivers (MQUP).  Canadian, Dutch, Scottish, American and Greek composers have set her poems to music including Emily Doolittle and Michalis Paraskakis. She has won the Alfred G. Bailey Prize, the Earle Birney Prize, and the 2019 National Broadsheet contest, among others. Her poetry has been included in the League of Canadian Poets and the Academy of American Poets Poem in Your Pocket Day Brochure, and has been widely anthologized including in Best Canadian Poetry.

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Julia Polyck-O'Neill, Aaron Tucker, Claire Kelly, Su Croll + Christian McPherson : virtual reading series #10

a series of video recordings of contemporary poets reading from their work, prompted by the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent cancellations, shut-downs and isolations; a reading series you can enjoy in the safety of your own protected space,

Julia Polyck-O’Neill : “Cell Atlas,” “poem for flesh,” “the theory of the maternal imagination (after Rosi Braidotti’s “Monsters, Mothers, and Machines”),” “the theory of (imagi)nation,” “poem for a new geography,” all from the suite Cell Atlas

Julia Polyck-O’Neill is an artist, curator, critic, and writer. She is completing a SSHRC-funded interdisciplinary and comparative doctoral dissertation at Brock University, examining connections between contemporary conceptualist literature and art in Vancouver. She was a 2017-18 visiting lecturer in Transnational American Studies at Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz, Germany, and is a 2019-20 Fellow of the Electronic Literature Organization. She was recently awarded a SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowship to work in York University’s Sensorium Lab. Her critical writing has been published in Canadian Literature, English Studies in Canada, BC Studies, Tripwire, Prefix, and elsewhere, and she has published three poetry chapbooks with above/ground press.

Aaron Tucker : excerpt from Catalogue d'oiseaux

Aaron Tucker's most recent work is the novel Y (Coach House Books) which was recently translated into French as Oppenheimer (Éditions La Peuplade); he has a forthcoming poetry collection titled Catalogue d'oiseuax with Book*hug Press in the Spring of 2021. His prior books also include the poetry collections punchlines (Mansfield Press) and Irresponsible Mediums: The Chess Games of Marcel Duchamp (Book*hug Press) as well as the cinema studies texts Interfacing with the Internet in Popular Cinema and Virtual Weaponry (both with Palgrave Press). He is currently a VISTA and Elia scholar undertaking his PhD in the Cinema and Media Studies department at York University where he is studying the moving images of facial recognition software.

Claire Kelly : “As if you steeped and drank these streets" from Maunder (Palimpsest Press 2017),” “Her Pillow Smells of the Special” from One Thing – Then Another (ECW Press 2019)

Claire Kelly has written two full-length poetry collections, One Thing – Then Another (ECW Press 2019) and Maunder (Palimpsest Press 2017), and a chapbook forthcoming with Rahila’s Ghost Press, Another Final Girl. Her poetry has appeared in literary journals across Canada and has recently focused on horror films (but with feminism!) and the apocalyptic nothingness that is becoming the certain future of Earthlings (but with jokes!). She lives and writes on Treaty 6 territory in Edmonton.

Su Croll : “Head-on collision,” “Side track” and “Loco motion” from Cold Metal Stairs (Turnstone Press, 2019), a book commemorating her father’s dementia and  death.

Su Croll’s two previous books, Worlda Mirth and Blood Mother, have been awarded or nominated for The Kalamalka New Writers Competition, the Gerald Lampert Award, the Stephan G Stephansson Award, and the Canadian Author’s Association Poetry Award. A short selection of poems from Cold Metal Stairs was long-listed for the 2015 CBC Poetry Prize. “Side track” was short-listed for Arc’s 2018 Poem of the Year Award. Her novel, Seeing Martin, is slated for publication with Pedlar Press. Su Croll lives in Edmonton.

Christian McPherson : “One Poem” from One Poem (Now Or Never Publishing, 2017)

Christian McPherson is a poet and novelist. He lives in Ottawa with his wife and their two kids. He has written a bunch of books including The Cube People, Saving Her, and My Life in Pictures. If he isn’t out walking his dogs, driving his son to hockey practice or his daughter to cheerleading, he is usually sneaking off to the movies. Walking on the Beaches of Temporal Candy is his new book of poetry coming out this fall from At Bay Press.

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