"It's about words, and words are all I have…"



This is quite possibly the most spectacular day of our brief Canadian

Spring   perhaps of our lives   Syria promises a chemical attack tomorrow

I promise ice+biting winds in 180 or so days   I suggest you squander the

Summer  It will be unbearably humid+mosquito ridden   And in close quarters

with the miserable TO herd  you will sweat profusely  +pray for a witness


2 robin redbreasts are pecking at each other’s eyes on the emerald grass of a

gorgeous enclosure  bequeathed by an oil baron  U of T   Now inching ever closer

to me  as I try not to kick at them with cloven Fluevog shod hooves   Though they

sorely deserve it    At present as well  I have 2 women in their 90’s in my life   93+98

to be precise   Both love an afternoon cocktail   One will drink the cheap stuff    The

other is Courvoisier VSOP all the way

($90/750 ml)


One is a prairie farm woman  Built the railroads fer chrissakes   The other an urban

beauty  whose brisket won a national award back in 62   A few years after she hung

up her model’s gowns (+hats+gloves)  All in my closet now  which btw has a pail in

its midst to catch the Spring rain   Everything is broken!  Or is it Robert Zimmerman?

I for one am still not giving up on finding the  Absolute    Some of you who believe

these poems to be creatures unto death  will find yourselves stunned!


I am in fact among the most hopeful on the planet   Despite a lack of  daffodils+

sunshine in my archive   To you I say: Stick it in a very dark place  For I am beyond

blown away  by the Geworfenheit   *(see Heidegger/thrownness)  of finding myself

cast as daughter  + daughter by proxy  to the heroines of our story  Yet now we head

back into darker territory   Not surprised are you?


How dare the Gods give me  this  body  + toss me here not as animal  but as lowly:

Bi-ped   Woman   Jew    Who?    Too bad that the mother’s  put one foot in front of

the other+keep on walking  wizendom  does not cut it with me   Searching for the

Absolute  makes a girl hungry   Perpetually    Now into our enclosure comes a man

dressed entirely in black  carrying a giant camera   Whereupon he begins to film my

denouement  +catches me kicking the robin





He was obsessed with the arbitrariness 

of having to have a body   No use for him

to tell himself he shouldn’t feel this  because

he felt this  (Frank Bidart  Metaphysical Dog Poems)    

Lifetime Achievement Award  Griffin Poetry Prize 2017



Summer 2017   Canada Day Eh?

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