Narrative Poem After Charles Olson’s “Cole’s Island”

                                         January    it was night
in a warehouse space              after an evening
of poetry performances
          A small warm
setting     very cold winter         (think black, red, and white)

Table set with antlers & roasted marrow 

                          She loud-laughing earlier at a poem
             about Vietnamese people or
I thought so         and even asked about the joke
(Did you get that on the ‘inside’? I had said) 

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The Greats, Chapter 1

PRUDHOMME_SYLVAIN_THE GREATS - cristian-newman-85385

translated by Jessica Moore

He felt her stretch out near him, smelled the scent of her hair, her shoulders, the oils she slathered on her body, the charms she filled their room with as soon as his back was turned. There were the ones he recognized, kola nut, dried lemons, perfumed shells placed in the open on the window ledge, beside the incense holder. And then there was the multitude whose presence he only guessed at, swelling the lining of a cushion, blocking the crack in a wall. He didn’t look for them, never looked under the bed or behind the furniture.
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Tanya Evanson: Canada’s Rising Star in Poetry and Musical Performance


Tanya Evanson is one of Canada’s best-kept secrets. Because of the form that she uses and the fact that her work straddles the worlds of music, poetry, performance and production, she defies categorization in a way that makes her completely unique – and she’s getting noticed.

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Playing Dead

Photo by Artem Kovalev

She shouldn’t have been out. But the air was delicious. Crisp and wet, she could feel the water in the air sharpening as the diplomatic restraint of the afternoon’s humidity released. The air disclosing to the stars it’s opinion of the sun. Her witness to this ritual undoing was made more precious by the knowledge she couldn’t know how soon she’d be walking at night again. Recovery from the procedure varied greatly and she couldn’t expect a quick return to normalcy. Not that she wanted to return to what had been normal ever again. The alarm on her phone whittled off minutes of sleep in her pocket, tracking how long she had before she needed to wake. She really shouldn’t have been out, but she was and it was worth it.

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You Are Bathing in Light

by Nicholas LB

translated by Natalia Hero

And anyway I don’t even have children to serve hot milk and cookies to while I kill myself. Sorry, I’m not Nelly Arcan, I won’t be hanging myself in my Plateau apartment, I actually live with my parents deep in the Angus Shops, where all the houses are the same, red brick and cheap kitchens. And from there, I make the trip to the hospital for my therapy sessions, where a whole bunch of Nellys and Sylvias are crammed together, some blonde like us, but also other girls and boys that aren’t lucky enough to look even a little bit like famous writers who killed themselves.
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A meditation on the intersection between identities, ideologies, and popular culture, ALLITERATION envisions fraternal twin sisters, sentenced to languish in a kind of otherworldly purgatory, ruminating on the past and questioning their once-resolute systems of belief.

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Klara du Plessis In Conversation with Liz Howard


Liz Howard’s Infinite Citizen of the Shaking Tent won the 2016 Griffin Poetry Prize, the first time the prize has been awarded to a debut collection. It was also a finalist for the 2015 Governor General’s Award for Poetry and received an honourable mention for the Alanna Bondar Memorial Book Prize. Howard received an Honours Bachelor of Science with High Distinction from the University of Toronto, and an MFA in Creative Writing through the University of Guelph.

carte blanche Editor-in-Chief Klara du Plessis recently spoke to Liz about translation, the construction of the self, translation, and navigating the contemporary literary landscape.

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Photo by Aaron Mello

“Have you been experiencing any problems?”

The doctor stares at me, fingers poised over his keyboard. The room is the colour of bone.

“What kind of problems?”

“Just general. How’s your sleep? Digestion? Aches and pains?”

I came to the doctor for the first time in five years to tell him about Jer, but he doesn’t fit into any of those categories so I hesitate. I look down at my feet, dangling between the metal stirrups of the examination table. My hands shake.

“Sleep I guess.”

“You’re having problems sleeping?”

“I fall asleep. And then I wake up.”

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