Surge Narrows by Emilia Nielsen - Leaf Press Spring Launch

On Tuesday, May 14th (Election Day, BC - vote early!) Leaf Press will be launching its Spring 2013 titles. Leading up to the launch I'll be featuring a poem a day from each of Leaf's three new poetry collections.

from "Vernacular Hearts" - Emilia Nielsen


The heart is getting shit-faced. Can’t hold the gaze
of tetchy waitresses, bartenders. Cleans its pocket knife.
Sharpens fork tines. Just because. Tests irony. Stiff upper
lip and downing another round. The heart is doing a bit
of pickling, a bit of self-preservation. Has never been so
wrought. Likes it straight-up, no chaser.


The heart curses brownnosers and hacks. Writing
rhyming verse. Crayoning a do not disturb sign in loopy
cursive. Dotting the “i” with a tiny balloon you-know-what.
The heart sits at sidewalk cafés, tries to check out passersby.
Can’t be bullied into anything. Marches to the beat of–
self-sufficient. Solo.


Wants to blow. Wants to get off. Shoots down every tin
image in its likeness, every plastic facsimile, every tissue
paper cut-out. Turning tricks. Picking scabs. The heart is
back on crack. It’s schlepping. It’s tonguing scissors.


The heart will stay on the line for the next operator. Will
await further instruction. Needs a convenient paradigm
shift. Wants to take responsibility for its actions. The
heart sings on caffeine. Thinks empowerment.


The heart’s skinny dipping. It’s gone fishing. Glib. Glee.
Its dancing shoes are on. It’ll never be a wallflower. It’s
kicking up dust. Wants to get this party started. The heart
blesses all who populate its corners. It’s on a camp-out.
It’s sleeping under the stars. The heart has never surfaced
more queer.

from Surge Narrows
(Leaf Press, 2013).
Reprinted with permission.

Emilia Nielsen holds a BFA in Writing from the University of Victoria, and a MA in English and Creative Writing from the University of New Brunswick. Currently, she is a PhD Candidate at University of British Columbia. Her poetry has appeared in literary journals including The Antigonish Review, Contemporary Verse 2, English Studies in Canada, Event, Descant, The Fiddlehead, Grain, Prairie Fire, Room Magazine, and was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in Poetry by Prism international.

Emilia will be launching Surge Narrows on May 14th, along with collections by fellow Leaf authors Daniela Elza and Leanne McIntosh. The details:

Leaf Press Spring Launch Party
Tuesday, May 14th, 2013, 7:00 PM
Rowan's Roof Restaurant
2340 West 4th Avenue, Vancouver
Featuring: Emilia Nielsen, Daniela Elza and Leanne McIntosh
Free, and free appetizers!

Check back in tomorrow for another Leaf Press poem!

No comments: