Trillium Book Awards Author Reading 2015

Special Feature! Poet on Poet: Marcus McCann's homage to David McGimpsey

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Every writer has their literary influences, and they each honour them in different ways. David Foster Wallace loved C.S. Lewis' The Screwtape Letters. Haruki Murakami digs Salinger and Fitzgerald. Zadie Smith is a Nabokov fan. Some tip their hats to idols in interviews, others take quotes as titles or include their literary favs in their acknowledgments page.

Poet Marcus McCann, author The Hard Return (Insomniac Press) has a more ambitious way of giving credit to a fellow poet he admires.

Today we've got an original poem of Marcus' — his comic homage to Montreal poet David McGimpsey. McGimpsey is a popular instructor at Concordia University. In this piece, Marcus uses found text from students' (highly rated) evaluations of McGimpsey on the website Rate My Professor to create a sweetly bizarre roast-as-tribute, in celebration of the recent publication of McGimpsey's newest collection, Asbestos Heights (Coach House Books).


I Was Thinking That My Contribution to the David McGimpsey Roast Would Be A Found Poem Called, “David McGimpsey Has an Average Rating of 4.3 on Rate My Professor, And Also One Chili Pepper: A Found Poem”: A Found Poem

by Marcus McCann

I cannot recommend Dave
enough. Dave is the shizznit.
I have no interest in literature
and no prior knowledge of Montreal
but I scraped out an A. Dave recites
lots of poetry by heart.
Too much poetry for my taste.

Classes always start good
but then are completely pointless
after 40 minutes. See for yourself.
He basically made me lose interest
in poetry but
he is a very funny guy.
No, he is charismatic
not funny. Don't get fooled

by his friendliness, he is not
an easy marker. And he gets really angry
if you are late. But he keeps students
up-to-date about the local writing scene
by field trips to bookstores. You will learn
a lot about poetry
unless you are dumb.

Marcus McCann is the author of two trade collections and a number of chapbooks, most recently Shut Up Slow Down Let Go Breathe (Dusie, 2015). His poems have recently appeared in This Magazine, Matrix, Jacket2 and Riddlefence. A previous work on David McGimpsey, a chapbook titled Labradoodle (above/ground 2013), was reasonably well received. Find him on Twitter @mmccnn.

David McGimpsey's newest collection of Poems, Asbestos Heights was published in April 2015. Find him on Twitter @DaveMcGimpsey.

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