Monday, October 24, 2005


Who's feeling stunned? Alcohol-poisoned? Confused? Delighted? In love with Jordan Scott's memory for television and commercial jingles? In love with no-pants parties? In love with Jon Paul Fiorentino? Shocked for Larissa Lai's bad luck? Thrilled for Jason Christie's good luck? Shocked for Jason Christie's bad luck? In love with the Ship and Anchor for breakfast? Enamoured of Dennis Cooley's stay-out-ive-ness? Sorry for anyone who missed the Post-Prairie reading at McNally Robinson on Saturday night? Sorry for anyone who caught the Post-Prairie launch at the Wild Words conference the next morning at 9:00 am?

I need a few days to dry out.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Oh Cara!

I had a dream last night that I was at Cara Hedley's cottage at Lake of the Woods and I was looking in her fridge. In her fridge were about 25 Japanese eggplants. In her freezer there were a whole lot of pancakes. Where is the cookie dough?

Oh boy, soon Cara Hedley (lil sister) will be coming to Calgary-- to stay? She just isn't sure. She is having the same problem as I am-- the post-MA-ennui.

Also returning soon will be Jordan Scott. Oh boy! I think all my friends should live in Calgary until I leave for Australia, at which point they should all come to Australia, only not competing with me for the same scholarships.

Two Dogs Enter One Dog Leaves?

"Cool Cats and Hot Dogs Poetry Night"
Wednesday, October 26, 7:30
Tubby Dog
103 1022 17th Ave SW

This is for the annual CJSW Funding Drive. I'll be reading as a two-woman-TWAT Team-- Brea Burton and I are reading our pirate poems. I think, when it is just Brea and me, it'll be the TWATs, and when Cara is reading too, we are TEAM.

Also reading: Samuel Garrigo Meza of Single Onion fame, Ali Riley, and the lovely Andrew Wedderburn. Ali Riley is lovely too. As is Samuel. I think the only dogs will be the kind they serve with fried eggs, wasabi, etc. Boy, those gourmet hot dogs are a little weird.

Prairie Writing

steal the show and tell

our buffalo bill:


alienation has nothing on
the exquisite embarrassment teenagers invented

my own city my nation

I submit: Calgary is a hell of a place to be 14

Saint Ampede’s
undeniable Clydesdale plod
salt water taffy tears of a rodeo clown

say "Wool-in-gong" not "Wall-en-gong"

On Sunday evening I met up with Shady Cosgrove to chat about the University of Wollongong Creative Writing PhD program. She is a professor of Creative Writing there, and has been here in Calgary for about a month on an exchange-- Nicole Markotic went to represent the U of C's writing program over in Wollongong. Shady was also doing a reading that night, along with Robyn Read and Caleb Zimmerman. (If Robyn Read ever appears on the same bill as Christian Bok, I hope she's listed first so that is says "Robyn Read Christian Bok." They'd get a very different audience I bet. Ha ha.)

The University of Wollongong (UOW) sounds great. Shady's partner mentioned the word means "place of surf" and that it is right on the beach. The city is small (200 000, Saskatoon-sized as Paul pointed out-- though I am sure he meant the city and not the berry ha ha) and Shady made a point of mentioning that readings, community happenings etc. aren't as common in Wollongong as they are in Calgary, but it makes sense-- a much smaller pool of audience members to draw on as well as fewer writers. I always get a little misty-eyed when people praise the Calgary writing scene and the energy and support we have for each other. Maybe that's to do with the fact that I so rarely hear positive things about Calgary from people from elsewhere otherwise.

I have to love my hometown-- I can't help it. Maybe that's one of the reasons I try so hard to be a writing-scene-booster-- but the problem with that is that there are always things I miss, and then I feel guilty. Shady, Robyn and Caleb's reading was a great one to not miss-- I met three new writers and the readings were terrrific. Caleb's was first. He described it as a children's story, which made me think he'd have a lot in common with Andre Rodrigues, but as he read, I thought maybe Chris Ewart should meet this guy. Robyn read second, and her story had a little in common with writer XXXXX XXXXX, but was a lot funnier, and a lot more fun. Shady read a non-fiction bit about a trip to Graceland-- that in itself was unusual-- who in Calgary writes non-fiction that reads like a story? I can't think of anyone... But maybe I missed them reading last night. Now I feel guilty.

The University of Wollongong is on the top of my list. The University of Queensland in Brisbane also looks good. I'll keep you masses of people reading this informed of my progress researching programs and funding.

Monday, October 17, 2005

dANDelion's New Web Page

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Who is Cowboy Poetry?

Cowboy Poetry wears a Saint Ampede buckle
polishes it every night by candlelight

bow leg barrel ride
legs buckle at the 8-second mark and bunny belts

I’m not saying Saint Ampede’s Virgins aren’t
but he’s got his pride

I mean like a lion does
Saint Ampede’s Princesses and Queen and the Young Canadians

and it’s immaculate: every year Saint Ampede fathers
Cowboy Poetry

and we all celebrate with breakfast
flap that, Jack. Saint Ampede is all around us

the motherfucking King of Heaven
the Patron Saint of Calgary

My Five-Year Anniversary

I've joined the Board of the dANDelion Magazine Society as a "Director at Large." I've been involved in some capacity or other with dANDelion since the English Department at the University of Calgary took over the operation of the magazine in 2000. At that time, I was in a creative writing course run by Fred Wah, and along with the other members of the class including Trevor Speller, Lindsay Tipping, Natalie Simpson, Tillie Sanchez and Darren Mathies, we made up the "Editorial Collective" for the first U of C-produced issue. Truth be told, Fred did most of the selecting. I solicited artwork from Tomas Jonsson and it ended up on the cover, though-- Tom is now curating at The New Gallery.

Trevor, Lindsay, Natalie, Tillie, Darren and I were the "PHU Collective" at that time, and published two issues of Phu Online. Our activities consisted mainly of staging science-themed poetry readings, wearing jumpsuits and drinking beer at Ming or the Grad Lounge.

Anyway, my involvement with dANDelion resumed in 2002, the summer I returned to Calgary to begin my Graduate Degree. I helped then-Assistant Editor derek beaulieu with a reading featuring Chris Dewdney, Wayde Compton, Ryan Knighton and Prize Budget for Boys (a bit of a sausage party, but a good time). In the fall I became Ass Ed. The following year I was Editor. In those two years, we had some amazing readings and put out issues I am really proud of, especially the "Disaster!" issue, which was a collaboration with TRUCK and won an AMPA Award for cover design. I also started the proud now-tradition of publishing dANDelion chapbooks featuring members of the Editorial Collective, which current Editor Natalie Walschots is, I am glad to see, continuing.

I love editing, and I miss doing that job, but I am looking forward to doing some of the more administrative jobs for the magazine as a Board member. We'll be applying for a Canada Council "Flying Squad" Grant, and you know, after three years of writing abstracts, proposals, and grant applications for myself, I think I am getting pretty good at writing that kind of document. It's all bullshit-and-fluff-- and requires a lot of creativity. Kind of like writing blurbs, I think. There is a funny bit in the new Matrix magazine, an excerpt from Brian Joseph Davis' Portable Altamount, called "Jessica Simpson's Grant Application" that makes use of phrases like "notions of fate and mortality" and "a new language of material skills." Ha ha ha :)

Well, dANDelion is supposed to have a new website up soon. That'll be nice. Since this whole post was kind of about me practicing putting links in my text, it would've been a nice end to the post to have a link.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

CFP: Extreme Write

Hey all you formally innovative Calgarian writers-- I am putting together an anthology of essays and creative writing from Calgary's oh-so-exciting creative writing scene and I am calling it "Extreme Write" (clever huh? Paul and I came up with that). If you have an essay or thesis excerpt or etc. that addresses avant-garde writing in Calgary, send it to me!

This is all part of my scheme to become a contributing member of society. do you think it is a good idea?

from Cowboy Poetry, St. Ampede and The Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth

Wonder Woman’s got nothing on
Cowboy Poetry’s lasso

he’s got this trick with a rope
he’ll dog-leg, he’ll hog-tie, spit on his hand spit in your eye

there’s a tear in my beer
for my Wonder Woman Underoos

Cowboy Poetry’s lariat and bolo
chaps and 10 gallon uniform his every move

meanwhile I’ve got my Wonder Woman panties in a knot
to dog-collar Cowboy Poetry

steal his pearlized snaps and
dog-tag him for the feedlot