In writing this draft, one of my chief aims was to relate the news without becoming too smarmy. Smarminess is a major pitfall in this sort of tribute-making. I also deliberately included news of a number of considerable Quebec anglo poets who are not, at the present time, LCP members; this to provide a more complete picture and prevent an excess of self-congratulatory insularity; in other words, more smarminess.
For those who are not interested in our provincial scene (which actually means, but for a brief escapade at the Festival de la Poesie de Trois Rivieres, the city of Montreal, or rather a certain Anglo town within it about the size of London, Ontario) I suggest you scroll down. But just skimming through the names makes for quite an impressive litany of literary production-- just a small indication of how absolutely fecund, telluric, and pullulating this corner of the world is. (See? I've fallen into it already. No, I must keep my guard.)
To look up any of the LCP members mentioned below, most of their bios and links can be found in this member's list.
by Brian Campbell
This year saw plenty of productivity on the part of Quebec LCP members and other poets. Clearly, Anglo literary publication does not falter dans la belle province. English language spoken word and poetry readings also continue to make vital contributions to
This past year, Stephanie Bolster published two chapbooks: Past The Roman Arena And The Cedar Of Lebanon with Delirium Press and Biodöme with above/ground press. Her first GG’s award winning book, White Stone: The
Fortner Anderson launched two mini-cd’s, He sings and six silk purses, which have tracked well on campus radio.
Montreal-based DC Books, which prominently features poetry in its publishing lists, celebrated its 20th Anniversary with a reading/launch at April’s Blue Metropolis Festival. Poets featured were Todd Swift (who launched his fourth poetry collection, Winter Tennis, at this event) and Jason Camlot, whose New and Selected Poems was launched a month earlier.
Other prominent Quebec-based poets who produced books over the past year included David Solway, whose Reaching for Clear: The Poetry of Rhys Savarin adds to his translations, Ann Diamond who published a novel called Static Control, and Susan Elmslie, whose I, Nadja and Other Poems (Brick Books) won the Quebec Writer’s Federation 2006 A.M. Klein Award for Poetry.
On the reading scene, the Atwater Poetry Project featured, among others, Ray Hsu, Gail Scott, and Fred Wah.
With Ilona Martonfi, the host of that series, Carolyn Zonailo organizes Lovers and Others reading series, now in its sixth or seventh year. This year it was at O'Regans Pub on Bishop in
Carolyn Marie Souaid was particularly active this year. She & Endre Farkas collaborated to produce the radio poem "Blood is Blood" which was aired on CBC Radio One's Outfront on December 18th. Carolyn was also featured in the Quebec Writer’s Federation “Writer’s Out Loud” series in the month of September. She, along with Maxianne Berger and Rae Marie Taylor, also read in Trois-Rivières for the 22nd Festival internationale de la poésie, in October.
The League of Canadian Poets (W)Rites of Spring reading/fundraiser at
The saddest news I have to relate is the passing of Artie Gold, author of a number of remarkable collections including City Flowers, Before Romantic Words, and his selected The Beautiful Chemical Waltz. A memorial reading packed