Thursday, February 3, 2022

Jeremy Desjarlais : Semiotics of the Long Poem in Book 4 of The Martyrology: Confronting Multiple Signatures

conversations on the long poem




The Martyrology is an elusive text that facilitates constant variability and flux. From the portraits of the saints in Books 1 and 2 that dissolve and reformulate into different portraits to the song book and passion play of Book 9, Nichol privileges the eclectic and enveloping nature of what the long poem affords him. In order to construct a poetic selfhood through long poetry, Nichol employs a paradigm of constantly shifting semiotics. By way of signature, The Martyrology relentlessly configures the author (or his multiple selfhoods of subjectivity) in a textual and readable way—that is, Nichol adopts countless iterations of his poetic self and deposits them throughout the work as evidence of his ontological presence. Paul de Man, in his explanation of semiotics, describes it as a “study of signs as signifiers; it does not ask what words mean but how they mean” (1516). This distinction between the what and the how of linguistic meaning favours the processes and methods by which signatory meaning is provided to the reader. de Man also states that semiotics is a procedure of constant revelation through reading, that it is reliant on a constant and multiple process of updating its given form during any point of the reading act: “The interpretation of the sign is not […] a meaning but another sign; it is a reading, not a decodage, and this reading has, in its turn, to be interpreted into another sign, and so on ad infinitum” (1518). Nichol’s signs develop meaning precisely in how they shift from one form to the next. As an establishment of selfhood through autobiography, his signs are substitutive in their movements. The substitution of one variant of signature to the next is an exercise of transfiguration through re-presentation. By way of syntax, spelling conventions, etymology, anagrams, and, most roundly, puns, Nichol widely permeates the text in an effort to exhibit his selfhood. Long poetry’s enfolding of multiple generic strains becomes a direct mirroring of these multiple signatory displays.

In his understanding of the long poem, Frank Davey suggests that its generic intent is to abound in dissimilar functions, tropes, expectations, and possibilities, when compared to other facets of long writings. The long poem, then, is tasked with introducing a novelty that is absent from previous iterations of the long poem genre; through its self-mobilization, one of the long poem’s crucial characteristics is to move or propel itself into a new type of language: "this is the central task of the long poem: to drive right past St As Is into new territory, into new languages, into surprise. To write long poems that are not, in sign, in image, in structure, like earlier long poems" (The Contemporary Canadian Long Poem 19). Utilizing Nichol-esque wordplay, Davey creates his own saint in his manipulation of the word ‘stasis’; the long poem is meant to disregard this saint, abandon the “as is” and progress from inactivity into accretion. This proclamation of total newness is, for the long poem, an inherent impetus reliant on a discourse of movement; not only does the long poem document a process of distance, depth, and length in theme, but the long poem propels itself towards a generic reliance on movement—out from one and into another. Davey later states that the inclusivity and absorption of the long poem allows it a sense of malleability and pliability when it considers what to integrate: "I expect the long poem to encroach further upon fiction […] And to encroach elsewhere. For the successful long poem exults in new signs, thefts, adventures" (20). Davey’s description carries with it a sense of cunning, that the long poem, at once, seeks adventure and surprise, and can be accused of (or lauded for) thievery and encroachment.

Both of the aforementioned passages also articulate the long poem’s utilization of the sign, something Nichol exploits and harnesses, in word and action, throughout the entirety of The Martyrology. Davey doubly mentions that the sign of the long poem, at its most core intention or utilization, is to proclaim generic divergence and departure. Hence, a given long poem, in its state as a long poem, signals that it is departing away from other, previous long poems. In doing so, Davey suggests that the long poem becomes “successful” in its “adventures.” Brian Henderson, too, acknowledges that The Martyrology as a long poem encounters the sign in language, albeit in a form of pilgrimage seeking sacredness: “For Nichol then, it is a journal journey. It is through the landscape of letters and words that the pilgrim moves, encountering saints and signs of the sacred” (“Soul Rising out of the Body of Language: Presence, Process and Faith in The Martyrology” 112). Henderson’s comments largely derive from Nichol’s Book 4, as this book displays Nichol’s employment of language that is largely infused with notions of signature through music. Nichol, himself, suggests that Book 4’s repertoire coalesces into a sensual totalization of participation—reading The Martyrology, at this point in its chronology, demands a visual, aural, and oral involvement: “By the fourth book I had managed to bring together the eye, the ear, and everything” (“Interview: Caroline Bayard and Jack David” 180). Nichol displays this arrangement of sensuality in the following passage, playfully incorporating references to his nominality and the musicality of the individuated letters:

the d will out
        as the b drops thru its
        half note


i is singing scale
        i hails you



the oral hang-ups change


a concern for listening (Book 4)


Nichol references his first two initials, b and p, with the letters d and b—the letter d is a mirror of the letter b, and the letter b, besides suggesting Barrie, can be turned upside down to form the letter p, suggesting Phillip. Similarly, the three letters all represent half notes on the bass and treble clefs in musical notation. The letter b, for example, simultaneously refers to the second letter of the alphabet, the first letter of the name Barrie, and the various b notes in half measure on the scales. Further, the letters d and b embody a vertical mirroring as well as a horizontal mirroring, thereby connecting to the lines later written: “i found / myself caught up in a) mirror image // (no way to notate the break” (Book 4). Placed beside one another, the lower-case letters d and b form a visual palindrome. Further is the fortuity of both notes serving as the exact middle notes of each clef—d for the bass and b for the treble. Depending on the notes’ placements on the scales, the stems of each half note form the various alphabetic shapes of b, d, and p. The letter i, in the lines “i is singing scale / i hails you,” also signals the poet’s name, in that the i is the only vowel to appear in all three of the poet’s names—Barrie Phillip Nichol. Specifically, the i, which is bpNichol, sings his name, borne out in b’s and p’s, across the reaches of the notational clefs.

Nichol later transforms the characteristics of his name to claim his own personhood:

sense out of nonsense
        N on sense
                       (which is me)

        i spell out changes
        realign essentials

        as i thot to
        sing a balance sing (Book 4)

Nichol imports the N of “Nichol” into the reconstructive move of “nonsense” to the “N on sense,” thereby involving himself in the transition from unmeaning to meaning, all the while claiming an innocence, the implicit pun here, in such a transformation. Besides being evidenced in the selected rhetoric—transitioning from nonsense to sense—Nichol also proclaims and justifies his own inclusion, suggesting that he, as poet and signifier through N, is deserving of this stanzaic positioning. Similarly, the following line maintains the identical aim of authorship in name through the authoring of the lines themselves; “i spell out changes” recalls the i of Barrie Phillip Nichol, and it also stands as self-commentary on the line itself—the i of bpNichol is present in these various signifiers, and the i also commands these changes to authorially occur. Nichol, as poet, governs the conveyance of these changes in the signified, shifting nonsense into the N of sense and “questions to answer / answer’s an A / B / ginning” (Book 4) and the following alphabetic enumeration:

                        i want the world
        absolute & present
        all its elements





p q


or b d

                    bidet (Book 4)

Suddenly, every N/en represents Nichol, every b/B/be/being/Being represents Barrie, every p represents Phillip, and every i represents the entirety of Barrie Phillip Nichol. In the various mirrors he has erected in but a few of these recent passages—“p q” and “b d,” which are not unlike the relationships he designs between M as an upside-down W and H as a sideways I—letters beyond b, p, and n continuously typify the poet. q and d represent a mirrored or disguised Nichol. The poet claims ownership over his lines by leaving his signature, in any arrangement or rearrangement it may wish to take.

Nichol has discussed this recurrent word play (or, perhaps, letter play) in comments made in correspondences and interviews with Mary Ellen Solt and Ken Norris. In “A Letter to Mary Ellen Solt” Nichol writes: “the key word was women     i looked at it & saw ‘w’s omen’ & it struck me that W’s omen was that it contained more than itself that it flipped over to become M […] the omen or portent was that i was reading words as sentences that said things about single letters” (116). These same sentiments are echoed in his interview with Ken Norris, suggesting that the letters of a word can be treated syntactically, allowing individual words their own trajectories: “It led me into a lot of things, eventually into Book IV of The Martyrology where I’m reading words as sentences that say things about single letters” (“Interviews: Ken Norris” 241). In the same interview, Nichol expounds upon his poetic process of discovering the doubleness of puns, in which an established letter or word is both a visual symbol and a linguistic conveyance of meaning (and the discussion also raises the third characteristic of sonicism through visuality). Nichol continues his discussion with Norris by situating his own poetry in a semiotics achieved through shifting, visual puns—the semiotics of ancient runes, in particular, allow all letter instances to embody visual meaning:

I really came more to terms with what I think of as the runic potential of the alphabet, which is to say that an ‘a’ is the signifier for an ‘a’ which is the signified and it is itself, so that when you mark down an ‘a’ you are not describing the name of something, you are creating something in the world. At that level of the visuality of the single letter you are creating in the very pure sense of the word, you are creating thingness. (240-1)

The word ‘runes’ is, etymologically, Old English in its current form (rūn ‘a secret, mystery’) and Old Norse in its historical form (rúnir, rúnar ‘magic signs, hidden lore’) (“runes,” New Oxford American Dictionary). Nichol, himself, plays with the hidden signs inherent through a runic-style of referentiality in his punning; as the movement of vowels, in particular, comes to create or de-conceal discrete and separate words, new meaning is signaled by new (through modification) words:

& the lines become as long as the tongue can

/ carry without breathing in

images shift

blue sky turning back to grey

it is the wind moves it

it is a language the celts knew & spoke of


(the running e's)
  pass as vowels thru energy

consonants as nouns

vowels as verbs

what are the sentences that form

        words they're made of
        syntax of alignment i want to see (Book 4)

This passage is a theoretical presentation of how Nichol’s vowel use signals shifting changes in words—that is, the displaced vowels create the shift in meaning brought about through a syntactic advancement. Movement, both as a propulsive energy and a syntactic furtherance through and towards meaning through reading, punningly appears in Nichol’s reimagining of the word ‘runes’; though it is defined through its etymology as a secretive, mysterious, magical, or hidden sign, Nichol syntactically examines the word as a movement of vowels, a movement that is spurred on by its own activity, transference, or running.

Often, then, the visual pun of a given word, when treated as a syntactical unit, is discoverable through strategic spacing, line breaks, and enjambment. All three techniques disassemble an assumed wholeness inherent in a complete word, eventually allowing words to be fractured and splintered into smaller components which still maintain linguistic coherence (prefixes, root words, and suffixes) as well as accidental and discovered words that are not intentional composites of their larger wholes. A syntactical explication of the following passage will indicate what Nichol is accomplishing in the disassembling of whole words and the shifting of vowels from one dismantled word to the next:

to do what one does

        with honour
        is the all

ist heal-


        u age

        's h



        the days are marked by their divisions

                  less divisive in
        the long run

        lung ran

        lang ren

        tall (Book 4)

Beginning with the first stanza, Nichol imports an ontological wholeness through action. The entirety of a life—regardless of its span or duration—results in an accomplishment. One’s action indicates fullness and totality, in that the ontological imperative suggests that being is the summation of what has been done. One’s actions throughout the course of an individual’s existence are defined as absolute and complete: “to do […] is the all.” The innate proposition is that existence is dependent on action—it becomes the signifier of a life lived; to act, behave, speak, or simply do with an accompanying honour is indicative of an experiential and existential wholeness. Nichol’s following stanza begins to manipulate the previous stanza (both in meaning and linguistics) with the shifting emphasis created by word spacing and enjambment. “is the all” becomes “ist heal-” with the space between the first ‘s’ and ‘t’ syntactically shifting to the left by an increment of one and the final ‘l’ of ‘all’ extending into the next line after the hyphen. The English verb “is” transforms into the German verb “ist,” also a singular, third-person verb. The additional ‘l’ in the rendering of ‘healing’ is faithful to the replication of the double ‘l’ in the previous stanza, but it signals the poetry’s desire for addition, extension, and elongation. “ling” simultaneously references a diverse range of poetic options. The enjambed spelling of “heal- / ling” ushers in this notion of the extension and continuation of the previous line. It also occupies multiple, morphological positions, simultaneously serving as a referent to two separate nouns, a diminutive suffix, and two etymological links: one, to the word ‘long’ (“long,” New Oxford American Dictionary), through Middle English and Middle Dutch, and the other to ‘lingua,’ Latin for ‘tongue.’ Through the supplanting of vowels, this passage proffers four separate variables (and one returning variable); sequentially, they appear as such: “ling,” “lang,” “long,” “lung,” and “lang.” The Saxon languages use the word “lang” frequently as a cognate to the English ‘long,’ obviously the next in Nichol’s ordering. “long” is altered into “lung,” a source of breath and a metaphorical source of speech, not unlike the reference to the tongue in “ling,” and the cycle closes with a return to “lang.”

The majority of these analogs are corporeal in their linguistic genealogies and utilization in this passage as a whole. As Nichol mentions, the composition of The Martyrology, this sensuality of the project, is insistently indicative of one of language’s major uses: “some new beginning / sensed here / amid the sensory sensation of / speech / these words” (Book 4). The inevitability of birth, growth and extinction, both as the biological process of existence and the linguistic transmutation of all components of written, spoken, pictorial, or musical speech, are a series of actions done by and to the body; when language is presented as “lang / u age,” the imperative act of existing through time, evidenced by aging, highlights the effable length required to indicate the act itself. Time (“hour” and “days”) marks the passage of the body through existence. As the word “runes” was earlier transformed into “the running e’s,” the identical verb is presented in two different tenses; the progressive verb is here expressed in the present and past tenses. As the body and language move, the changes occur to the aging individual and the transfigured verbs; the “long run” then affects the following line, “lung ran,” again situating breath inside the utilized breathing apparatus of the individual. Breath and changing speech become indicative of the body and language user.

Nichol’s understanding of these sites of speech—the lungs, the tongue, the song, the poem—indicates a fluency of mutation between what is voiced and what is written. Often, these sites syntactically alter and blend into one another, suggesting a continuation and transmutation of expressive locales (both bodily and writerly) and techniques (poetry, song, speech, image). Despite the speaker’s demise, the language ventures towards its sustainment:

the i dies finally

        merges with the land's scape
        scope increases

        the folded page

        writes its way into

        the longed for






as the lips form (Book 4)

The subjective voice finally dies, perhaps dies with finality, yet is revitalized through transformation; the i is enveloped by the land, which modifies into a folded page, one which then impulsively begins to write upon itself; story becomes song, and the musical, vocal work of a choral round leads to formed lips, ultimately intimating at a circular perpetuity. Nichol replicates a comparable process of transmutation when discussing generic melding, echoing Davey’s aforementioned comments regarding the long poem’s tendency to encroach upon other literary trends:

reading B.S. Johnson earlier this week, discusses Scott's shift from

narrative poem to novel, what he saw as the death of the long poem,

puzzling its resurgence, its popularity in recent years, i realized the

lines had disappeared between the forms, that the novel & the poem

were merging finally, a clarity, freedom to move as i choose (Book 4)

Again, this similar language—the subjective i as it concludes or begins with finality, the process of merging and shifting, longing and the long poem, the increase and resurgence of language, the punning and paired language of the “new song” and the “novel & the poem”—accentuates the process of continuation in each instance or section of The Martyrology and also, most necessarily, the process of signifying constancy from one section to the next.

Nichol also imbues the feet of the individual with a poetic source of production, similarly to his sites of orality and breath. The speaker traverses the poetry, in Nichol’s usual and punning way, on prosody’s metrical unit of the foot; the streets, corridors, and passages, another evidential pun indicating a part of literature or song and also an avenue for travel itself, indicate the syntactical and linear pathway for the language to span across the page. This movement upon the foot, as a writing experience, echoes Michel de Certeau’s understanding of the cityscape as a textual location, one in which the inhabitants unknowingly write atop the streets they traverse upon: “They walk—an elementary form of this experience of the city; they are walkers, Wandersmänner, whose bodies follow the thicks and thins of an urban ‘text’ they write without being able to read it […] The paths that correspond in this intertwining, unrecognized poems in which each body is an element signed by many others, elude legibility” (“Walking in the City” 93). The body’s foot imports itself onto the streets as a utensil capable of textuality, indicating a multifarious pathway of signatory scribing:

the buildings rearranging themselves daily

        the city no enemy ever took
        because the streets shift even as you walk them

        doorways change

        familiar only to the saints who lived there

        recognized dwelling signs no stranger'd ever see

        they went crazy on this earth

        only language retaining the multiplicity they were used to (Book 4)

Certeau’s passage reflects the city-dweller’s alienation from the city itself, suggesting a civic unfamiliarity accompanies an individual throughout the contours of the space. The language that is imprinted is doubly indecipherable to the author and the reader—that is, the condition of occupying both stances within the cityscape. In Certeau’s metaphor, a sense of dislocation motivates the walkers throughout the space they find themselves in. Yet, whilst navigating the city in a bewildered state, the walker creates a text in a digressive and discursive mode, leaving behind the entrails of confusion and uncertainty. Those walking are unaware of the creation of text as a result of their own movements; thus, the legibility of signatures of every individual housed within the cityscape is unauthored and unreadable.

Nichol describes the city as being in a state of vicissitudinous shifting, wherein the city’s components are in flux during the body’s navigation. The “buildings [are] rearranging themselves daily,” “the streets shift even” as they are walked upon, and “doorways change.” The city resists the occupation of its inhabitants, renouncing the ease and feasibility of their participation; it wishes, seemingly, to reject the walker’s attempts to comport him or herself throughout its form. In Nichol’s understanding of the city-as-language, these lines speak of the linguistic mutability and fluctuation of language itself. Etymology provides an historical construct of language, yet words undergo reduction and accretion through morphology, words introduce adaptation through translation processes, and words experience extinction and resurgence. If the city rejects its walkers—if language repudiates its speakers—then the individual must re-learn how to navigate such spaces. The activity of change, loss, shifting, supersession imposes a requisite onto the city dweller; a state of maintenance and adjustability provides a purposeful attentiveness for the dweller, the language-user: “purpose can / become conceit, shift beneath the feet, the line of speech that's called / political, the signified slides below the signifier, gets lost in what's / expedient, the strength of english" (Book 4). Nichol possesses an approving attitude towards the city walker, unlike Certeau; for Nichol, language is legible, decipherable, and approachable. Even though language walks away from the user, the user can elect to walk towards language. Certainly, language alternates, exchanges, and transfigures, but this is a provocation towards the language-user; Nichol asserts that the language-user must be willing to make a comparable, responsive exertion of willingness to alternate, exchange, and transfigure, both in his/her poetic proclivities of production and tendencies of acquisition (of reading and studying).

Acknowledging that “the duty of a citizen” (Book 4) is to inhabit the city expectantly, Nichol urges the language-user to maintain a vigilance of upkeep—to orient and re-orient, as necessary, to perpetuate the inhabitation. Finality—as it conceptually relates to the demise of a city space for the usage of the public figure or even a concluding hope for The Martyrology itself—abates and diminishes the more that Nichol produces in writing. Postponement, however, is a more accurate tendency that Nichol writes towards. The long poem ventures towards an overabundance, an unreadability (due to excess), and a ceaselessness, all of which attempt to suspend an ending. This postponement is a process of deferral, by which the movement through these streets of language evades a terminus:

i am thinking it is better left behind

        this city they no longer had a use for
        make my way thru the shifting streets

        along these sheets of paper to an ending

it is not over

it is never over (Book 4)


Even though the city’s usefulness and accessibility reach an expirational point in time, with its inhabitants seeking to depart, Nichol conflates the city space with the space given to the poet; the avenues and corridors the citizen traverses through simultaneously erect themselves as the margins and lines the poet works upon. The city shifts, like the function key upon the keyboard, providing its user with two (and more) modes of operations, morphing and blending into different options of service for the user. As the streets blend into the sheets of paper, an ending is ultimately promised; but this is undercut immediately with Nichol’s proceeding lines. There is an ambiguity with Nichol’s use of the singular pronoun ‘it,’ in that the word can signal the two preceding, singular nouns: ‘ending’ and ‘city.’ Simultaneously, then, this city is not over, and an ending is never over, or vice versa. As the near-homonymic relationship between ‘streets’ and ‘sheets’ suggests a coalescence, the thematic relationship between the unending city and unending poetry blend, impactfully, into one another. The linguistic relationships that Nichol forms in his wordplay suggest fluency between one word and the next, certainly, but also the expectation of an ending and the immediate renewal from the resisted conclusion:

to write my way thru the books of the dead

        let the process take me


        the books of the living

        & i move now

        out of 3

into 4

        or 1

some new beginning

        sensed here

        amid the sensory sensation of


these words (Book 4)

The corpus of the city and the physical books of The Martyrology lead ‘thru’ and ‘into’ one another; the dying cities and books pre-suppose the futurity of living cities and books. Nichol suggests that the signatory qualities of pasthood, evidenced by expiration and extinction, eventually foreground and allow the substantiation of further presentations of signature.

Primarily, Nichol’s saints are a conception of language in its material and movable forms; in this, the originary quality of an ‘st’ word is transfigured into poetic meaning simply by the typographical introduction of spacing. ‘st’ words become language’s realization of its own signatory status. Through a linguistic shifting, the lowly and banal ‘st’ words are heightened to a position of nominal referentiality, representing, predominantly, two processes of conversion. Firstly, Nichol’s poetic impetus in discovering the saintliness of language awakens St. Orm, for example, from his previous station as, merely, the word ‘storm.’ This first conversion invokes a redemptive quality by bestowing nominality onto the ordinary quality of the various ‘st’ nouns of the whole work. These words are allowed to access their own properties of signature, ultimately providing Nichol with a new beginning in language. Secondly, Nichol goes to great lengths to provide the individual martyrologies of the assorted saints; in this aim, which is a primary concern in Books 1-4, the supposed deaths of these saints of language are subverted with the emphasis of their living status through Nichol’s own language that populates The Martyrology. Death is undermined through a process of repurposing:

'you are dead saints'
        given back into the drift of print
        of speech

                        born anew among the letters
        a different tension

different reach

        of logic

of the mind's playing out of

        reason (Book 4)

To drift is to shift, speech becomes one’s effort to reach, and the language bears its future iterations. Nichol’s language is genealogical and expectant of future progeny. When investigating his own familial heritage, he also comes to document the reproductive qualities of language bearing more language: “i am / the evidence of / their lovemaking / their spoor” (Book 4). A signature, then, is evidential of a current state of being and a past state of being; Smaro Kamboureli indicates: “Signature functions as a sign that oscillates between the author’s presence and absence in the text” (On the Edge of Genre 170). Signature stands as the instance of self-presentation and self-proclamation, demonstrating one’s beginning originating from one’s ending.

At the close of Book 4, a substitutional form of signature presentation occurs, where the interplay between text and image becomes another form of self-presentation:

begin again

        that way among the tensions
        the interplay between the letters


        not in the saints’ names

        which was beginnings

        but in that space between

        the s & t

        among the shift of what at first seems arbitrary

        ‘to go beyond the point where it is even neces-

/ sary to think in terms of words’ (Book 4)

This initial interplay issues an ability to “begin again,” formatively reaffirming the reconstruction of words into new words through all of his usual means—puns and spacing, most pointedly. But this final quotation, a journal entry of Nichol’s from April 7, 1964 which also serves as a slightly altered epigraph to Book(s) 7 &, suggests that Nichol seeks to progress past the mode of written language. This is previously verified in the altering images of the saints themselves from Books 1-4, but the conclusion of Book 4 presents a rendered image of Nichol, beyond the various visages of Nichol that occupy the front covers of all of the texts. Nichol is presented with simple line work, the poet’s eyes are closed, and his head and chest spurt from the ground. It is a humble and simple image, and it comes to represent a different form of signature. The lone image of Nichol moves him beyond the necessity of language, fulfilling a small prophecy his closing words intimate at. But at the bottom of the page, the poet returns to language; “january to december 1975” closes the entirety of Book 4. These are dates of composition, indicating the months that spanned from one beginning to one conclusion, one month shy of an entire year. Yet they also read as graven words of the poet’s existence or even Book 4’s existence; jointly, the text and image appear as a tombstone might, with the time stamp of survival beneath the bust of a (dead) man with closed eyes. The text and the image dually demonstrate Nichol’s presence and absence, assembling the poet’s and the poem’s exhibition of signature.



Works Cited

de Certeau, Michel. “Walking in the City.” The Practice of Everyday Life. Trans. Steven Rendall. Berkeley: U of California P, 1984. 91-110.

Davey, Frank. The Contemporary Canadian Long Poem. Lantzville, B. C.: Island Writing Series, 1983.

Henderson, Brian. “Soul Rising out of the Body of Language: Presence, Process and Faith in The Martyrology.” Read the Way He Writes: A Festschrift for bpNichol. Ed. Paul Dutton and Steven Smith. Open Letter 6. 5-6 (Summer-Fall 1986): 111-28.

Kamboureli, Smaro. On the Edge of Genre: The Contemporary Canadian Long Poem. Toronto: U of Toronto P, 1991.

“long.” New Oxford American Dictionary. 3rd ed. Ed. Angus Stevenson and Christine A. Lindberg. Oxford: Oxford University P, 2010.

de Man, Paul. “Semiology and Rhetoric.” The Norton Anthology of Theory and Criticism. Ed. Vincent B. Leitch. New York: Norton, 2001. 1514-26.

Nichol, bp. “Interview: Caroline Bayard and Jack David.” Meanwhile: The Critical Writings of bpNichol. Ed. Roy Miki. Vancouver: Talonbooks, 2002. 168-84.

———. “Interviews: Ken Norris.” Meanwhile: The Critical Writings of bpNichol. Ed. Roy Miki. Vancouver: Talonbooks, 2002. 237-44.

———. “A Letter to Mary Ellen Solt.” Meanwhile: The Critical Writings of bpNichol. Ed. Roy Miki. Vancouver: Talonbooks, 2002. 113-6.

———. The Martyrology: Books 3 & 4. Toronto: Coach House, 1976.

“runes.” New Oxford American Dictionary. 3rd ed. Ed. Angus Stevenson and Christine A. Lindberg. Oxford: Oxford University P, 2010.







Jeremy Desjarlais is a doctoral student in McGill's Department of English where he is focussing on Canadian and Indigenous long poetry.


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