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Topic: Margaret Christakos

“My bloodline outstretches rivers”: Divine Animal by Brandon Wint

Brandon Wint’s collection, Divine Animal, showcases his facility with words. Like the work of spoken word artists such as Toronto’s Andrea Thompson, his poetry sings on paper. Divine Animal is rich with anger, mourning, yearning, celebration, sensuality, and hope. The collection is also a timely and important reflection on the origins of systemic racism and long-time police brutality against Black people in the Western world.

A Conceptual Lift-off: SKY WRI TEI NGS by Nasser Hussain

I love this conceptually and formally playful book by Nasser Hussain, a catalogue of poems composed (we discover) exclusively of international airport location codes. His constraint-based collection glints with wit, humour and daring, uninterested in being compared with less formally audacious poetry carriers.

Spin the Bottle by Gaslight: Robin Richardson’s Knife Throwing Through Self-Hypnosis

Robin Richardson’s poems are interested in pop culture, eroticized power skirmishes, and point of view. She often concentrates a poem around a lozenge of plot scammed from movies, history, theatre, pulp fiction, or bad TV. As if playing a game of Trivial Pursuit, we get to figure out who the narrator of the poem might […]

Weight, Rise and Riffle: Jordan Abel’s Exuberant Excisions in The Place of Scraps

It is easy to scrap the effort it takes to speak about the intensely complicated ethics of museum culture. Every object in a museum “comes” from a source place; most often the objects have been taken, and their home cultural context has been subsequently imperilled. The artifact accession process, subsumed in hyperattentive procedures of classification […]

Children of the revolution: Margaret Christakos' Welling

Welling, Margaret Christakos’s eighth volume of poetry, weaves across the borderlines between past and present and explores the significance of place. The “welling” of the title refers to Wellington Heights in Sudbury, where Christakos grew up. But it also alludes to welling up—to a sense of things brimming to their edge, about to tip over […]

On Alice Burdick's "Winter Here"

“Winter here” (p. 92) is one of my favourite poems in Alice Burdick’s second book, Flutter, and stands as a kind of key piece for understanding Burdick’s unadorned, yet complex and conflicted, aesthetic. The first lines, uncharacteristically, are wordy and romantic. Very un-Burdick, very ornamental. A lofty eye names the natural world with high literary […]