Keith Harrison (1945-2019)

Born in Vancouver and encouraged by Earle Birney, Hornby Island’s Keith Harrison himself became an inspiring teacher at Vancouver Island University, bringing out nine books along the way. FULL STORY

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Three X 2

March 06th, 2019

Cassandra Blanchard (pictured), Laura Matwichuk and Sarah de Leeuw will launching new poetry books at Massy Books on April 24, 2019 at 7 pm, and then again the next day, April 25, 2019, at the Courtenay Public Library at 6pm. Books to be sold by Laughing Oyster Books.

Born in Whitehorse, Cassandra Blanchard of Duncan has a BA from UBC with a major in gender, race, sexuality and social justice. Dissecting herself and the transient life she once knew, including time on Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside as a drug addict, Cassandra Blanchard writes candidly about violence, drug use and sex work in her debut Fresh Pack of Smokes (Nightwood $18.95). “This night in Oppenheimer Park Dan asked me to shit-kick this chick in the face as she owed money and I said no because I didn’t know who she was and I wasn’t about to play with fire so he sat on the bench then stood up and did a flying kick twice to her chin and she convulsed and passed out he said he didn’t want to spill blood because she had HIV…” 978-0-88971-352-9

Criss-crossing the Canadian–American border and making efforts to grasp a confused global state, this new collection digs through grief, loss, aging, technological frustrations, environmental degradation and nationalism. Outside, America, Sarah de Leeuw‘s latest collection, is unfolding across a variety of scales, from international spheres to the most intimate of domestic spaces. These poems are tethered to everything from whale extinctions and lounges in worldwide airports, to debris slides and suiciding pilots. From sinkholes, astronauts, grocery-store magazines and earthquakes to sinking ferries and pop stars. This is a collection that touches down on divorce and career changes, on scientific discovery, resource extraction, climate change and the death of a parent.

Near Miss, a striking debut from Laura Matwichuk considers the relationship between close calls and the tenuous conditions of contemporary life. From actual cataclysms such as meteor collisions and volcanic eruptions to everyday failures and accidents, these inventive poems collide with the perpetual unease created by unpredictability while contemplating mortality, fragility, gratitude and hopefulness.

 

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