Trillium Book Awards Author Reading 2015

GREAT CANADIAN POETRY WARS; GOODBYE AND GOOD LUCK

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Since I haven't managed to rattle any sabres, I thought I'd bow out this month with a reading of an X rated scene in my new novel, The Third Day Book. While shooting, my granddaughter actually turned green. Now she is barfing. Is that an appropriate critical reaction?

In any case, she is too attached to the porcelain bus to attach the file; but please check it out later on, as these sites are saved.

I have just come home from Cloverdale School, where I foolishly volunteered to paint faces this morning. While I was fabricating a holly wreath on the cheek of a nervous six year old, two short anarchists attacked me with glitter and tempera.

I think I will have my husband take my photo and attach the image to my next book cover.

The point being, even in hard economic times with a government that disdains cultural workers, you can prune cultural workers, but you really can't keep them down. We are a bit like marijuana, a weed that grows anyway.

Which reminds me of the time I read in San Francisco with the United Nations Poets for Peace. After my reading, Dana Goia (sp?), Dean of the new American formalism, approached with with a smile. "I love, he said.....your haircut."

Oh, for God's sake. Get a grip, princess. The poems I read had won International Awards.

I had coffee with Harold Rhenisch yesterday. Harold is about to write a book about poetry, or poetic theory, which he claims will go off like a bomb in academe. "Everything is form now," he reported. "It's the fashion."

How would I know. For someone who slavishly reads fashion magazines, I keep my poetry head in the sand. If there is anything I dislike about this crafte and sullen art it is cliques, competition, waves (and I don't mean hairdos)... I really could care less what is trendy in writing. There is nothing that drives me wilder than a night at the BS cafe, where every single reader sounds like a bad imitation of a bad local poet.

Form shmorm. It is fun to know about haiku, rengas, sestinas and ghazals. I do that with my grandchildren, just to prime the pump. We also play Simon Says, which is more fun when people DISOBEY the command.

Great poetry is not an academic exercise; it is passionate social engagement, man to man, woman to woman, tree to air, child to parent, cat to mouse, smoke to endorphin.

Wordy wants to know if I got the poet laureate job. Let me just say, tune in in two weeks and we will all know. In the meantime, I will dream like an anarchist. I will plan how I would transform ruin and beauty into sacred conversation, how we will take poetic forms to the sandpile and bury them in beautiful ideas that reach for the sky.

If you are near Victoria on the first weekend in May, you can hear Rhenisch and Starnino do round three in the Great Canadian Poetry Wars. I will definitely be there.

For now, it's goodbye and good luck.

The views expressed in the Writer-in-Residence blogs are those held by the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of Open Book: Toronto.

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Linda Rogers

Linda Rogers is the author of the novels Say My Name (Ekstasis Editions, 2000), Friday Water (Cormorant Books, 2003) and The Empress Letters (Cormorant Books, 2007). She has also published several collections of poetry, including Love in the Rainforest (Exile Editions, 1996), Heaven Cake (Sono Nis Press, 1997), The Saning (Sono Nis Press, 1999) and The Bursting Test (Guernica Editions, 2002).

Go to Linda Rogers’s Author Page