The March This Time: a Collective Conversation

Looking back to 2014, it seems a kinder, gentler time. Dr. Cornett is a wise, genuine, passionate teacher who leads with spirit and vulnerability. Interesting to look back at his work, now that Dr. Jordan Peterson has risen to prominence; now that Me Too has had its moment, now that this kind of conversation feels…

Top Books!

April 29th, I was out with two very special women, who’ve been at my side and had my back since I was 10 years old. How fitting that they were the ones to take me to Chapters South Edmonton for a post-dinner rummage around the literary offerings there. Mark Messier’s memoir was prominently displayed in…

Choral Collaboration News

In just over 2 years of collaboration, Mari Alice Conrad has composed a number of remarkable settings for various of my poems. Beyond delighted to announce that Journey Song has arrived for purchase on Cypress Choral Music. Meanwhile, in Toronto, Exultate Choir will feature the Stephen Chatman Award winning At First Light on May 23rd…

Book Club Reflection: the Power of RISE

It has been 16 months since Humane launched, and what an amazing ride it’s been. Any time I wonder about the usefulness of writing a novel, I get sent wonderful messages from various sources. Here’s one that cropped up today while I was researching language resources (specifically, recorded examples of how to pronounce ‘Maengan’ –…

Questions for Bestsellers

A friend and colleague sent me this tonight, news that Humane, in its second year now since release, is again (still) on the Alberta Bestsellers List. We’re not a huge market. But we’re my home market. And I’m thrilled that people continue to take Humane home and engage with it. I know that part of…

Reading the Writing World

I love my career as a writer. There is so much more to it than just sitting down somewhere and writing a poem, a story, a song. There’s a world of research behind the actual creative bits. Some of it is heavy, but a lot of it is joyous. Right now? I’m listening to some…

Journey Song Arrives!

After a pandemic-induced wait of about 16 months, it’s here! The World Premiere of composer Mari Alice Conrad’s SATB Choir setting of Journey Song, sung here in a live recording in Toronto by commissioning choir Babel, under the baton of Elaine Choi. I first published a version of Journey Song in my 2009 collection, Fifth…

Makushin Readings: From Russia with Love (of Books)

In May, it was my distinct pleasure to attend (via Zoom) the 12th annual Makushin Readings in Novo Sibirsk/Tomsk, Russia. Recently, the presentation was posted on Youtube. Many thanks to my friend Svetlana Pavlenko for arranging this opportunity.

Words made Song: another collaboration

Canadian composer Mari Alice Conrad’s latest piece, The Peculiar Dances of Shifting Minds, inspired in part by this poem of mine which honours my late mother. Also on the program, new works by composers Athena Loredo and Alice Ping Yee Ho; all performed by Vancouver’s Allegra Chamber Orchestra, under the leadership of Janna Sailor. Congratulations…

To Russia, with Love (of Books)

Well, today has opened with an amazing experience. I presented a talk at The Makushin Readings. http://www.spsl.nsc.ru/ Our topic: What is the role of Books as carriers of culture in our globalized, digital world? To summarize my answer: Books set down the limits of the known, and point at the possible. As well, by what…

Day 15: Archeology of a Last Nerve

pull the trigger breach the dam bury the evidence we have the means, the stories, the blind need to misconstrue through archeology anything at all, create an arc of time and culture or an ark divine, in whose boots to tremble heebie-jeebie monkeys that we are. drop the rock breach the dame blaze on past…

Day 10: ‘fractious circumlocution’

Fractious? Sir, come low cues shun. Say not the two word kick in the gut, do not cut to the chase and blaze. It’s true long words don’t run like a sword through the neck of bumpf. Still, sir once said, there can be no take back. It’s a heart attack, you say What fool…