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An eagle egg fell into a farmer’s chicken shed
and when it hatched the farmer gave it chicken feed
even though he was the king of birds. The farmer
clipped the eaglet’s princely beak and raised him
my friends, my sweet barbarians,
there is that hunger which is not for food —
but an eye at the navel turns the appetite
Our national bird – for years – was – as A M Klein said –
the rocking chair
I don’t know what our national bird is now – but my totem bird is
After late-night Li Bo,
on a plane to Houston, out of sheer intumescence
I begin unravelling a sickness bag—
starting with the wired throat,
then the pleated sides, then bottom.
What's it like at the centre of the AGO?
Hmm. Imagine being coloured, drawn, and placed
in a wooden frame, another hung woman, positioned
A black and white picture
The sun is shining through a window behind you
Your hair black short Your small brown hands folded neatly on a tiny wooden desk
i can barely speak in my mother tongues stutter
my accent is bad
i hate jalebi
but i like aloo samosa
i'm a bad brown
girl i didn't join the
SAA or the ISA
I come from the land of
Where You From?
My people dispossessed of their stories
and who have died again and again
in a minstrelsy of afterlives, wakes,
the dead who walk, waiting and
grass is unusual
it was invented by the Romans
unlike most people grass stays where it grows
if grass had gone to the moon it would be there today
because grass looks luxurious
the law mandates that a hate crime only be classified as such if there
is ample evidence to show that one’s actions were motivated by
prejudice toward an individual’s nationality, ethnicity, sexuality,
Please read all the instructions carefully before proceeding.
Use only permanent blue or black ink.
If you have special needs that require accommodation,
If you can’t speak / write in a fissured / alter-language
Of nerve-matter / dura mater / orbit of the central axis
By a crevice / scattered / venous lacunae / lamina code
I understand you.
I get what you’re trying to say.
What you’re trying to say is you want me to get it.
I get it. You want me
to understand. You want me to know
take the moon
nd take a star
when you don’t
know who you are
paint the picture in your hand
nd roll on home
take my fear
nd take the hunger
take my body
Hello from inside
with a windproof lighter
You’d have to pay us
Could you pay us enough
To live for a stretch
The place, the question, the question.
The place, the interest, the question.
There is the place.
There is what you do in the place.
There is your belief.
— say the names say the names
and listen to yourself
an echo in the mountains
say them like your soul
was listening and overhearing
and you dreamed you dreamed
Would I have seen her?
The tide tugging her gently past
the Comfort Inn; houses, tall and gabled,
This is our welfare half
a duplex with mint green
siding shrugged between
I have a picture of us when we are seven
but we aren’t in it. At the time it was taken
we thought we were. We posed with our wide
You ran naked out the door.
The neighbours laughed; I chased you down.
I hardly see you anymore.
But I do come to Trillium. To the Cardiac
Short Stay Unit where you’ve been sent for the second stent,
where free sanitizer prevents the spread of panic.
(a twelve-tone poem)
trite yap show
rosy twit heap
Who is this black coat and tie?
Christian severity etched in the lines
he draws from his mouth. Clearly a noble man
who believes in work and mission. See
how he rises from the red velvet chair,
I am awake between stiff
sheets tonight in room thirty
four, listening to the heat
We cannot know this statue, this satyr
with his head propped on a wineskin;
we cannot know if he dreams. In fact,
The books sit on the shelf, a row of coma patients
in a ward, a series of selves no longer able to learn
and trapped at the point of injury: the last page.
Your best friend falls in love
and her brain turns to water.
You can watch her lips move,
Entirely windless, today’s sea; of these waters’ many names
the best seemed “field-of-pearl-leaves,” for it smelled like the air
in the house he built entirely of doors: pink school door,
i am writing to tell you
that yes, indeed,
we have noticed
We have each tried to read to him, with no success, except for James,
who read him all of Robert Louis Stevenson’s Travels with a Donkey in the
Your father worked Drumheller while you ate and slept at home.
He travelled the badlands, squatted below rocks, read books
Coin Exhibit, British Museum.
Their misshapenness strikes the table in tiny splashes,
like still-cooling splatters of silver. Stater and shekel,
GOODLOOKING BOY wasn’t he / yes/ blond /
yes / I do vaguely
/ you never liked
Sometimes we are led through the doorway
by a child, sometimes
by a stranger, always a matter of grace changing
Very loud a mad frenzy The wooden
barrel she rode would have roared
(I first wrote “road”)
Once one gets what one wants
one no longer wants it.
One no longer wants what?
Rain at Muchalat, rain at Sooke,
And rain, they say, from Yale to Skeena,
And the skid-roads blind, and never a look
This city is beauty
unbreakable and amorous as eyelids,
in the streets, pressed with fierce departures,
For Hetti Corea, 8 years old
‘The Sinhalese are beyond a doubt one of the least musical
In my body flows the blood of Gallic
Bastille stormers and the soft, gentle
ways of Salish/Cree womanhood.
Calved from a glacier near Godhaven coast,
It left the fiord for the sea — a host
Of white flotillas gathering in its wake,
You are still on the highway and the great light of
noon comes over the asphalt, the gravelled
shoulders. You are on the highway, there is a kind of
At 100 Mile House the cowboys ride in rolling
stagey cigarettes with one hand reining
half-tame bronco rebels on a morning grey as stone…
Today doves flew from my head
and my hair grew
the longing is gone from my body
At the beginning I noticed
the huge stones on my path
I knew instinctively
before the sun’s liquid
spilled gradually, flooding
dont worry yr eyes
dont worry yr brain man th snow is
cummin th bright burds flyin highr, th