20200706

Unfinished Duplex


Steffi Tad-y

After Jericho Brown



I was scared being angry meant being unloveable.
Angry I had nowhere to put it down.

Anger, where do I put you down?
The Tagalog word for pomegranate is granada.

Having eaten what I can’t detonate, I agonize.
I agonize over gut flora while taking pictures.

I take pictures of magnolia, plum, &  bougainvillea.
The trees detonate magnolia, plum, & bougainvillea.

I was a child of an explosion after explosion.
Without a camera, my cousin saw an explosion.

What does it mean to witness an explosion? Carry it home? 
I was scared being angry meant being unlovable.





Steffi Tad-y is a Filipina writer based in Vancouver, B.C., in the unceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, & Tsleil-Waututh nations. Her first poetry chapbook was published by Frog Hollow Press in 2019. To watch the Toronto Raptors play live is part of her bucket list. One of her current and pressing goals is to write a funny poem.


20200702

An interview with Rose Maloukis


Rose Maloukis is a poet and visual artist, with a BFA from Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan. She was born and grew up in the United States but has dual citizenship and resides in Montreal.  Her poetry was short-listed for the 2015 Montreal International Poetry Prize and two poems were published in Matrix Magazine, Issue #105. A winning Second Place erasure poem has been published in Geist’s 2018 Spring Issue #108.  Her chapbook, Cloud Game with Plums is forthcoming from above/ground press.

How did you begin writing, and what keeps you going?

I’d been thinking about taking a writing course for some time and an ad popped up on my computer screen for a poetry course at McGill called “The Green Freedom of a Cockatoo.”  I’d always loved poetry but hadn’t thought about it in terms of writing.  Wasn’t I lucky, the teacher was Sue Sinclair!!

The class finished in late November, and the following January, that was 2015, four of us formed a group to continue workshopping our poems.   I’d written the odd poem here and there, but after Sue’s class is when I started writing seriously.

What keeps me going is the learning, and the variety, the variety of forms and styles!  There’s always something to ‘try out,’ see if I can do it, or if I like it.  You know, if it feels right for me and holds my interest.   I like adding to my tool kit.

Have you noticed a difference in the ways in which you approach the individual poem since you published your first chapbook?

Yes, in that I’m attempting to write longer poems.  It seems that though my focus has shifted, the short poem still insists.  I equate it with a painting question.  How do you know when it’s done?  For me it’s when you add something and have to scrape it off.  Repeatedly.  Sometimes it feels like the painting/poem itself knows when it’s finished.  That said, I’ll keep at it.

What poets have influenced the ways in which you write?

The ways in which I write and the ways in which I would like to write—probably the first was Appolinaire, I loved his Calligrammes, still do.  After that, Theodore Roethke. More in the present – Angela Rawlings, Michael Dickman, and Alice Oswald.

How important has mentorship been to your work? Is there anyone who specifically assisted your development as a writer?

I’ve not really had a mentor per se but Sue Sinclair was/is an extraordinary teacher.  She knew just how deep to go in her critiques so as to encourage me to keep trying to move from mere verse to writing something approaching poetry.

Sarah Burgoyne is another poet whose approach to critique has been invaluable to me.  Her emphasis was/is on what’s working in the poem, moving away from personal likes and dislikes.  To me that’s a great way to foster creativity. And,  Sarah made me believe I could trust my writing.

What are you currently working on?

I’m really just writing and seeing what stacks up.  Eventually, I hope to have enough poems that satisfy me to put together a manuscript.  Right now, things are pretty scattered.

Can you name a poet you think should be receiving more attention?

I am following Jake Byrne’s poetry.  It has an element of ease to it and is, at the same time, exciting.  I’d like to see a full collection from Deanna Radford.  And I wonder when there will be new work from Eva H.D.   There’s a brand-new poet, Matt Carland, who mixes science and emotion so brilliantly.  Vallum picked up a poem of his recently and I hope he’s encouraged and will keep writing.  


20200629

The Harvest Dumpster

Joel Robert Ferguson




O Manitoban cold-storage beneath 
lot lights, snow-night, ornamental fence
and unmanned cameras; open-maw dumpster 
behind the food bank, twixt tracks, 
the old cracker factory, warehouses
and grain elevator, filled with bounty.

How far the food comes to wind up
here; Prince Edward Island potatoes, occasional
Alberta beef b-cuts saved by Winnipeg's February,
cans labeled in Thai or Hindi,
for whatever reason not parceled out
out front, but still good in natural stasis.

And at the call of gleaning precision, gloved hands
shovel food into bags, and there's always some 
                     bigmouth who, making note 
                     of the waste of the West 
          blurts out starving children 
a world away as though 
we weren’t picking through trash at midnight.






Joel Robert Ferguson is the author of The Lost Cafeteria (2020, Signature Editions) and holds a Masters in Creative Writing from Concordia University in Montreal. His poetry has appeared in numerous publications including Arc, The Columbia Review, The Honest Ulsterman, The Malahat Review, Orbis, and Southword Journal. He lives in Winnipeg, Treaty 1 territory, with his partner and their three cats.


20200625

Train : a journal of carefully-considered re-emergence


Issue #9 : Julian Day Jason Heroux Charlene Kwiatkowski David Ly David Martin Emilia Morgan Steffi Tad-y





includes shipping
four issue subscriptions also available
includes shipping
 

Julian Day lives in Winnipeg. His work has recently appeared in Juniper and Ghost City Review, and his debut chapbook will be published by Anstruther Press in early 2021.

Jason Heroux is currently the Poet Laureate for the city of Kingston, Ontario. His most recent book is the novel Amusement Park of Constant Sorrow (Mansfield Press, 2018).

Charlene Kwiatkowski is a writer living in Vancouver. Her poetry has been published in PRISM international, Barren Magazine, Long Exposure, and Open to Interpretation. Her fiction has appeared in Maisonneuve and Ottawa Arts Review. Charlene was runner-up in Pulp Literature's 2020 Magpie Award for Poetry for a sonnet anticipating the birth of her first child. She holds a Master's degree in English Literature from the University of Victoria and works at a contemporary art gallery. textingthecity.wordpress.com

David Ly is the author of Mythical Man (Anstruther Books, 2020) and the chapbook Stubble Burn (Anstruther Press, 2018). His writing has appeared in carte blanche, The Maynard, PRISM international, Plentitude, The /tƐmz/ Review, and others. He is the Poetry Editor of This Magazine and a member of Anstruther Press' Editorial Collective. Twitter: @dlylyly.

David Martin works as a literacy instructor in Calgary and as an organizer for the Single Onion Poetry Series. His first collection, Tar Swan (NeWest Press, 2018), was a finalist for the Raymond Souster Award and the City of Calgary W. O. Mitchell Book Prize. David’s work has been awarded the CBC Poetry Prize, shortlisted for the Vallum Award for Poetry and PRISM international’s poetry contest, and has appeared in numerous journals across Canada.

Emilia Morgan is a Palestinian-Canadian writer and co-founder of Coven Editions small press. Her long poem Suburbia was published as a tiny book in by In/Words press, and you can find more work in Bywords, talking about strawberries, Chaudiere, and some other places. She is a member of the Arc Poetry Magazine board and otherwise spends as much time as possible with plants and animals.

Steffi Tad-y is a Filipina writer based in Vancouver, B.C., in the unceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, & Tsleil-Waututh nations. Her first poetry chapbook was published by Frog Hollow Press in 2019. To watch the Toronto Raptors play live is part of her bucket list. One of her current and pressing goals is to write a funny poem.


20200622

Time’s Strain

Rose Maloukis



There are those who point out
to me the rules I break, offer
a heuristic technique to survive
to wear the whole shindig.

White hat black hat no matter
a price is paid for pushing
my own heat, sparks and embers  
migrate to the cooler ridicule.
                     
I’m not going back to where
I came from, can’t get cozy
with a honky-tonk god, acquiesce
where no one speaks my language.

Twang!  my deformation de·pen·
dent on fatigue, I think, but refuse
to confess to a true beliefthat
things might have been different.




Rose Maloukis is a poet and visual artist, with a BFA from Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan. She was born and grew up in the United States but has dual citizenship and resides in Montreal.  Her poetry was short-listed for the 2015 Montreal International Poetry Prize and two poems were published in Matrix Magazine, Issue #105. A winning Second Place erasure poem has been published in Geist’s 2018 Spring Issue #108.  Her chapbook, Cloud Game with Plums is forthcoming from above/ground press.


20200618

An interview with David Martin

David Martin works as a literacy instructor in Calgary and as an organizer for the Single Onion Poetry Series. His first collection, Tar Swan (NeWest Press, 2018), was a finalist for the Raymond Souster Award and the City of Calgary W. O. Mitchell Book Prize. David’s work has been awarded the CBC Poetry Prize, shortlisted for the Vallum Award for Poetry and PRISM international’s poetry contest, and has appeared in numerous journals across Canada.

How did you begin writing, and what keeps you going?

I started writing poetry when I was in university. At that time, I had been taking an introductory survey course on English poetry, and I happened to meet a group of Calgary writers who would get together once a week to share their work and discuss poetry. This combination of studying poetry and being surrounded by those for whom it was a living art was the main catalyst for me to start writing poems myself.

I’m not completely sure what keeps me going. Someone once asked me if writing poetry is “fun,” and I replied that it isn’t, really, but that there is a certain kind of satisfaction in completing what you think is a pretty good poem. Maybe that’s what keeps me going.

What poets have influenced the ways in which you write?

Lots of poets have influenced me over the years, though some of the poets who affected me when I was a young writer no longer have a hold over my imagination. Lately, I’ve been hoping that the brilliance of Michael Donaghy’s work will rub off on me, but that might be wishful thinking.

Have you noticed a difference in the ways in which you approach the individual poem, now that you’ve published a full-length collection?

Sometimes I approach a poem knowing that it will be part of a larger project and connected thematically with the others, but often I start a new poem not really knowing where it’s headed.

How important has mentorship been to your work? Is there anyone who specifically assisted your development as a writer?

I’ve been lucky to have a number of artists who have offered their advice and encouragement to me over the years. When I was beginning to write poems, Calgary poet Kirk Miles was immensely important as a mentor to me. I was also lucky to work with Bert Almon at the University of Alberta, and I learned a great deal from him.

Can you name a poet you think should be receiving more attention?

There are numerous poets who could do with more attention, but I guess I’ll just pick one. Sylvia Legris is a really great poet from Saskatchewan, but she seems to get more recognition for her work in the United States than in Canada.

20200615

Kootenay Group


David Martin




This outcrop chops logic:
a blender of interbedded
shale and silt smuggled in
glacial meal is exhumed
by clastic talking cures.
Hairpinning rube-seams
fist bump mudstone squatters
chugging oh-two brews,
while boho aspens snort
coal to cook up a scree
of showboating fancy-Dans.
En route to a cirques scoop,
a lamp house stockpiles slag.
Moss maps cements nap,
reclaiming dimpled vugs:                                    
sphagnum beards hum here.



David Martin works as a literacy instructor in Calgary and as an organizer for the Single Onion Poetry Series. His first collection, Tar Swan (NeWest Press, 2018), was a finalist for the Raymond Souster Award and the City of Calgary W. O. Mitchell Book Prize. Davids work has been awarded the CBC Poetry Prize, shortlisted for the Vallum Award for Poetry and PRISM internationals poetry contest, and has appeared in numerous journals across Canada.

20200608

Navigating Some Dworkin Maps


Frances Boyle




i.                     tiptoe neologism

shlip shush
insinulate round the cornerstoop
corridor percolumcution
fingler on hips

elephegantic wordplay

ii.                    elusive bongo breakdown

raptop slaptap
stopstart warily standstare    pause
wantnot willnot cantstop ghosthaunt
staystrong playlong halfgone blob
badmoon ragoon showtune bassoon builtsoon
fleshwound mayjune lakeloon
muttership
rudderslip
wordlessness
pause

iii.                   calcify cottony domicile doll

where you live:  curtains quilts cushions
dolloped whipped-creamy over surfaces
swaddled in cosy, you lie recumbent
blue eyes open to the ceiling   

iv.                   complex phrasemake bizet adept

complex phrase – make bizet adapt?

v.                    verbosity rev

revving (start your engines) well then, well then, what do I think about the fine state of affairs in the world today? Let me tell you, it isn’t like it was (whazz, whazz) when I was young,  no, not at all, it’s just a dog eat day world (whirr, whirr, whirr),  ever’ body for them selves and it’s not mine to make of it more that it was but if I had my way there’s be a rev-rev-rev-olution, a revisioning, a new dog day, a taking off and going places, a tomorrow, a …






Section titles taken from Craig Dworkin’s Maps http://www.ubu.com/ubu/unpub/Unpub_009_Dworkin_Maps.pdf





Frances Boyle is the author of two poetry books, most recently This White Nest (Quattro Books 2019). She’s also written a novella, Tower, and a forthcoming short story collection, Seeking Shade. Her poems and stories have appeared throughout North America and in the U.K., with recent and upcoming publications including Best Canadian Poetry 2020, Blackbird, Prairie Fire, Parentheses Journal, Cypress and The /tƐmz/ Review. Originally from the prairies, Frances now lives in Ottawa. For more, visit www.francesboyle.com


20200601

Personal Archive


Steffi Tad-y

After Joanne Arnott

I placed years of work inside a word cloud
generator in an attempt to sift through
a record of racing thoughts I prefer
as rain on my rubber boots, small & wet,
I can shake off by the door beside a mop
& a red bucket. The words in large serif
a constellation on the screen: woman, want,
trees, arms, home, called, look, enough.
You may lose face, but what happens
& grows in you is what gives you a vision.
This morning shade once auburn has now
marooned. A cul-de-sac to park sunsets.
Woman. Want. Trees. Arms. Home. Called.
Look. Enough. Each full stop unspooling
the cardinal & bluebird privacy of things.



Steffi Tad-y is a Filipina writer based in Vancouver, B.C., in the unceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, & Tsleil-Waututh nations. Her first poetry chapbook was published by Frog Hollow Press in 2019. To watch the Toronto Raptors play live is part of her bucket list. One of her current and pressing goals is to write a funny poem.

20200528

An interview with David Barrick


David Barrick’s poetry appears in The FiddleheadThe Malahat ReviewEventPrairie FireThe Antigonish Review, The Dalhousie Review, and other literary magazines. He teaches and writes in London, Ontario, where he is Managing Director of the Poetry London reading series. His first chapbook is Incubation Chamber (Anstruther Press, 2019).

How did you begin writing, and what keeps you going?

I started taking writing more seriously in my late teens and early twenties. I had always been interested in storytelling and art, but my main focus throughout high school was math and science with the goal of eventually studying paleontology. I remained very fixated on dinosaurs as a teenager. While OAC Calculus ended any desire for a scientific career, I realized that my true interest in dinosaurs related to their fantastical, imaginative possibilities, and I could explore those inclinations in stories and poems instead. I’m still fascinated by paleoart—the cover image that I chose for my chapbook, Incubation Chamber, is Philip Henry Delamotte’s etching of Benjamin Waterhouse Hawkins’s partially-built Crystal Palace dinosaur statues—and I’ll never grow tired of the sensational illustrations in Gregory S. Paul’s Predatory Dinosaurs of the World (1988).  

My writing practice has a fair amount of ebb and flow, but I keep a regular journal to stay focused and explore new ideas. Reading a wide range of books, going to local arts events, and watching movies all provide creative fuel. Listening to music is especially important for me. Often, I try to capture the feeling of specific songs in my work; for example, I wrote the poem “Love Song” (recently published by post ghost press) while listening to “Clowns” by Goldfrapp on repeat. I think many writers do this sort of thing. As of late, my playlists have had a lot of horror movie soundtracks (John Carpenter, John Harrison, Goblin), ECM jazz albums from the 1970s, and of course, a good dose of metal.

Have you noticed a difference in the ways in which you approach the individual poem since you published your first chapbook?

Since Incubation Chamber was published, I’ve continued writing recurrent dream poems because they just keep coming (and they’re fun). The poems in my chapbook tended to be very compact, often a single concentrated stanza, so I’ve tried experimenting with some forms that breathe a little more freely—my poem about moths (“Open,” published here on Train’s website) is an example of that. I’ve been trying to find different ways to create tension and motion in my work. So far, that has seemed to result in poems that are either weirder or more tranquil than those in the chapbook.

What poets have influenced the ways in which you write?

My earliest poetic influence was probably Gwendolyn MacEwen, along with other famous Canadian poets such as Michael Ondaatje and bpNichol. Ondaatje’s Rat Jelly is a deeply strange collection, and that made a lasting impression on me. Stylistically, my writing doesn’t resemble Nichol’s, but I’ve always loved his ability to bring warmth and wit even to his most experimental language poems. The more of his work you read, the more you see just how expansive his creative vision was. In recent years, I’ve been inspired by Stuart Ross’s blend of surrealism and family memories in A Sparrow Came Down Resplendent and Pockets, as well as Eve Joseph’s magnificent prose poems in Quarrels—I like when poetry has an element of narrative and character in it. I also marvel at the lean, razor-toothed enigmas that are Jim Johnstone’s poems.

How important has mentorship been to your work? Is there anyone who specifically assisted your development as a writer?

Many people have played crucial roles in my ongoing development as a writer, so I’ll just mention a few. My parents provided essential early creative encouragement, and I think of my brother Dan and my wife Theresa as ideal first readers. My former undergraduate thesis supervisor, Joel Faflak, who teaches at Western University, is one of those professors who invariably gets his students excited about art, culture, and ideas; the fact that he took a very generous view of my creative writing both amazed and motivated me. Kathryn Mockler has given me lots of excellent insight into the writing life over the years. Most recently, I’ve appreciated the encouragement of Tom Cull, who is one the best literary community builders I know. My chapbook editor Blair Trewartha and the Anstruther Press team have been wonderful guides into the world of small press publishing.

What are you currently working on?

I’m finishing a full-length manuscript, tentatively titled Nightlight, which has grown from my chapbook and its themes of anxiety, imagination, and dreams.

Can you name a poet you think should be receiving more attention?

I can’t name just one—there are so many incredible poets writing in Canada right now, and they all deserve more attention (even if they’re already well known). Currently, I’m re-reading Roxanna Bennett’s Unmeaningable and Sue Goyette’s Ocean, a pair of very different but equally remarkable poetic sequences. I can’t wait to get my hands on new books by Canisia Lubrin, Michael Prior, Annick MacAskill, Shannon Bramer, David Ly, Conyer Clayton, and Amy LeBlanc, to name a few. If we’re talking about very recent work, I’ve enjoyed Anton Pooles’s eerie, cinematic image poems. If we’re talking about older work, Nelson Ball’s sublime minimalist poems can never receive enough attention—he is one of the best kept secrets in Canadian poetry, and sorely missed.     

20200525

Easy-Bake cakes never taste like they should




Emilia Morgan



Heather from next door got jelly sandals yesterday
and, in the haze of summer heat they kick up baseball
diamond dust. Bicycle spokes and lipsmacker sparkle
like her translucent handlebar streamers. God,
                                         she looks like sunshine
                                         and a slush puppy. She
adjusts spaghetti straps over shoulders sprinkled with
easy-bake freckles and snaps bubblegum.

Saturday, I call Teta and aunties, serve maramia tea
and wait for my turn on the landline to call Heather
(I know the number by heart) and hear about
                                         horse riding
                                         sleepovers
                                         and other strange customs.





Emilia Morgan is a Palestinian-Canadian writer and co-founder of Coven Editions small press. Her long poem Suburbia was published as a tiny book in by In/Words press, and you can find more work in Bywords, talking about strawberries, Chaudiere, and some other places. She is a member of the Arc Poetry Magazine board and otherwise spends as much time as possible with plants and animals.