that's an order

sorry i've had no posts lately. been terribly busy with my new project, Geroy is Mr. Lube. perhaps my stupidest idea yet. check it out, though, and sign the petition.

and peruse the september issue of High Altitude Poetry. early release. so damn professional.

and check out my new favorite web mag, feathertale.

and read this poem.




the tragedy of
his golden wife
his shimmering
prison is what
we all remember
and the knowledge
that we would
be wise enough
not to make
his mistake

rarely do
we consider
the currency
that occurred
      gold now
      than sand
how much the
world longed for
green and the
singing of birds
how melodies
became the new
market standard
how the world
stopped reading
and boasting and
for one shining
moment started

from the September 2006 issue of High Altitude Poetry

more of my poems from HAP here.


colour me splattered

Leopold McGinnis, author and editor of Red Fez magazine, has been kind enough to promo my chapbook, splattered earth, on the Red Fez site. he even went to the trouble to take a photo of his copy so people could appreciate the garish red cover (why didn't i think of this?). thanks, leopold!

what is splattered earth, you ask? find out by ordering a copy right now! just click on the "paypal" icon in the sidebar. own a copy of the chapbook that has been called both "good shit" and "good crap."


so i was at this reading

so i was at this reading
and a woman was up there
she was iranian or something
old with long grey hair
and she’d written this special sonnet
king or prince or crown
or something like that

anyway, it was this
set of seven sonnets
and they all ran together
with the last line of one
being the first line
of the next and
i thought “geezus christ”
and started looking
for a fire exit
but she had already started in
about some bird she’d found
all chewed up in her
backyard and how she
named it and fed it
and scooped its poop
out of the little cage
she made for it
and I kid you not,
she went on like this
for seven sonnets
and the bird got stronger
and stronger and
then, it had to be
half an hour later, it
flew out of the cage and
out of the window
and hell, probably right
into a passing jet engine
for all we knew.
then she closed the book
real slowly with this sad
look on her face
and when she looked up
everyone in the audience
started clapping and they
had sad looks on their faces
i mean, i had a sad look
on, too, but i doubt it
was for the same reasons.
everyone was clapping
every single damn person
even the sound guy
who i’m sure lays in
bed twitching his wrists
up and down, dreaming
he is the god of volume
blaring and muting heaven’s trumpets
even he took his hands
off the soundboard
and joined in.
and then it happened.
i felt my arms lifting
i couldn’t stop them
they were jealous of their
peers, slapping together so
furiously all around them.
i started clapping, slowly
but the momentum...
soon i was stomping my feet on the floor
whistling, yelping
i stood up on my chair
screaming “ENCORE! ENCORE!”
i didn’t care that everyone else
had stopped clapping and
the room had grown eerily silent.
i pulled out my cell phone
and ordered a pizza.
i figured they owed me
half an hour of their time
and damn if i wasn’t going
to make the best of it.
so i sat there, eating,
for a good twenty minutes
listening to the silence as
it nursed me back to health
and when i was finished
the audience lifted me to
the window with their
tender palms and with
one firm push sent me
flapping out into
the busy world.

from the Spring 2005 issue of iamb. more of my poems from iamb here.


book review: Purdy

my review of The More Easily Kept Illusions: The Poetry of Al Purdy, ed. Robert Budde, is now online at poetryreviews.ca.

read it here.

while i'm posting: High Altitude Poetry is hosting a picnic/reading tomorrow in the AQ gardens at SFU if anyone's interested. more info on their website.


questions to the stars

when i die, lord, what will my father look like?
i remember him old and wrinkled, but my brothers
remember him when he was a young fighter.
will we all see the same man?

do we get to choose how we look in heaven?
can we pick our perfect age or do we
always appear as we did when we died?
is heaven filled with geriatrics?
are whole aisles of heaven's groceries devoted to prunes?

what about the babies, then?
the stillborns?
do they age?
do they become wise and strong
as their parents would have dreamed?

more importantly, lord, i'm wondering tonight about hell.
if we can pick the age we look, can we not
too pick the age when we were still good?
don't get me wrong, i look around this place
and i understand the need for hell
but i'm certain even little adolf was at some time
dazzled by the endlessness of a snowfall
the tiny mechanics of a frog's legs or
the sunken deliciousness of a black forest cake
(like the one my mother baked for us tonight).

surely that boy deserves a spot in heaven.

and lord, i know you are a busy man and
i don't want to hold you up any longer
i just wanted to say that you and me are much the same.
we both hold a lot of answers inside ourselves.
we gaze out into the unknown,
our bellies full.

- from the September 2005 issue of High Altitude Poetry

read more of my poems from HAP here.


What the hell?

I'm having to say goodbye-for-now to Ida Ferdinandi tonight. A good friend, and longtime High Altitude Poetry member, Ida is heading back to Montenegro, which, to put it mildly, sucks the big dog. It will be a great loss not just for her many close friends, but also for the wider poetry community at SFU.

Anyway, here's one of her untitled poems from the July 2004 issue of High Altitude Poetry, which somehow seems appropriate right now:

An intruder
In a strange land
On a truck
Wind in her hair
Dirt on her pores
There's a man
He gives her an onion
With the skin of a chestnut
Taste of a potato
She smiles back
What the hell?
An intruder
In a strange land

-Ida Ferdinandi