To become a metaphor

Half way up Everest you find a bag of weed.
You stash in it in your sleeve so no one else sees it
and so you feel it crinkle in your symmetry.

Three-fifths up the exit polls arrive with the victorious:
“We saw it on the horizon—the sloths won.”
Lights out, you spark a J from a hand-wash-only tag.

Two-thirds up it’s obvious, and your crew insist
share or leave. It’s Jonestown or no foul play

Seven-tenths up you’re all coughing, or was it
four-sevenths, you’re waving down the upcoming

The wholly-sober survivors return home to learn
there was no signal—the sloths never left office.
Leadership stick the climbers up their sleeves, brag

“I got this for being a human being.”
Someone pries your coat free because
someone they love is freezing. They are a moment

weightless, dreamy. “Why’d nigh thinka that
–damn tag been buggin since we set out.”

~

Special thanks to Amanda Besserer for prompting my partner to prompt me about Everest.

Advertisements

Tough and honest and lovely

Horsebroke_2 Cover glamour shot

“A mix of straightforward, gritty poems with fanciful stuff. Some wry humour, some poems of youth, and ferocious poems as well.”—Amanda Earl, Editor of Bywords.ca & Angel House Press

“The new poems are strong and tough and honest and lovely and welcome after so long, and the books are beautifully made.”—Cameron Anstee, Apt. 9 Press

I am proud to announce that, one, the first edition of Amanda Besserer’s The Desert and The Flood sold out, and two, that a new edition is now available. Please visit my Horsebroke Press for a copy.

It’s been a pleasure working with Amanda. I can’t wait to see what she does next. Follow her on wordpress or twitter for more poems, articles, and oversharing.

The Desert and The Flood

Horsebroke_2 Production previewProud to announce The Desert and The Flood, new poetry from Amanda Besserer, is now available for pre-order via Horsebroke Press.

The Desert and The Flood is the first collection of poetry from Amanda Besserer in nearly a decade. After a long hiatus, Amanda has made re-emerged with a voice both romantic and grounded. Her poems tour the wreckage of lunar accidents, hop Charybdis, and dangle their feet from the rings of Saturn. Most of all, this is the poetry of a survivor; of someone who has learned when to purr—and when to roar.

Amanda will be reading at the Factory Reading Series in Ottawa on Friday June 17 at the Carleton Tavern (FB link). The book will be available there and at the Ottawa Small Press Fair the next day, Saturday June 18, at the Jack Purcell Centre (FB link). Pre-orders via Etsy will ship on June 17.

Want a taste of Amanda’s work? Visit and follow Revolution From My Bed.

New publications, tour dates

A lot going on, such as a beloved work in print: the first poem I wrote about my son (for my wife) has been published in (parenthetical) magazine from words(on)pages in Toronto. You may read it online but I strongly suggest ordering a copy of the magazine—words(on)pages produces beautiful books.

20160515_135150

New chap-poem: A cento after Cameron Anstee’s  chapbook ever the night goes beautiful has been published as a chap-poem by Puddles of Sky Press—it’s called “the night goes” and it’s free with an order of something awesome, like the graphic novel issue of illiterature issue v. the graphic novel or The Hopeful Barnacle: New & Selected Poems of Andrew Nurse.

8450787

Two upcoming tour dates: Tues. June 28 at the Tree Reading Series (Ottawa) with Talya Rubin & my friend, the incredible JM Francheteau, and Sat. July 2 at Artfest (Kingston) with tourmates Cameron Anstee and Justin Million, and the wonderful Frances Boyle. Both those shows are free, so please come out and buy some chapbooks if you can. Artfest is going to be just incredible, with sixty poets reading in Kingston’s City Park over the long weekend. Cannot wait.

2016 05 22 Blackman Jeff author photo for Tree Reading -  credit K Maxfield

New title from Horsebroke press: My little press is taking on its first poet (who isn’t me) with a collection from Amanda Besserer. It will launch Fri. June 17 at the Factory Reading Series (Ottawa) and be available at the Ottawa Small Press Fair the next day (Sat. June 18). If you can’t make it to Ottawa, you’ll be able to order it via our Etsy store at that time. More details on this project very soon.