Archive for April 10th, 2009

Windsor, Ontario


We are veiled by white-starred blossoms
Drenched in the scent of mock-orange
Our tongues tingle with bites of
Raisin-juicy bread

There are bees buzzing in the arbor
Cardinals glide to the feeder
I sense the blood pulsing through my veins

I knead the earth beneath my bare toes
Feel I will spring roots
Or perhaps wings

Lenore Langs


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London, Ontario

Smog Alert

Throughout our listening areajimkemppaintingfigureblueskirtseatedbraque
light pollution. Evening haze

drifts down from some secret smelter
depending on which wind blows. Small

particulate matter fills the air, fills our lungs
with tiny lumps that hang there undetected
except we can no longer fully breathe.

Cosmic clouds descend upon us. Below
breath. Below thought. Below bellow.

Probability of precipitation. Mixed rain
and thunder showers. Severe weather

warning. War in heaven, warming
torrents into twisters. Forecast unforeseen.

The radio calls for showers.  Fog patches.
Clouds clog the mind, crowding thought.

Now calm come… clear of cloud…
I’m thinking stars. Or stars are thinking me.

Where are they? Beyond the veil, still
twinkling, emitting their own dust trails.

Sound/performance poet Penn Kemp lives in London, Ontario.  UWO has asked her to be writer-in-residence for 2009-2010.  Among her publications are more than twenty-five books of poetry and drama, ten CDs of Sound Opera and poetry as well as Canada’s first poetry CD-ROM and several award-winning videopoems: sample http://www.mytown.ca/pendas/, http://myspace.com/pennkemp.

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Parry Sound, Ontario

Planetary Poetry

Sestinas sustain prairie-lands

ensuring the end rhymes with thyme.

Villanelles vie for Victoria,

repeating themselves in Regina

to the serpentine Assiniboine

in the bloom of sunlit Pantoums.

Cultivating the lapdogs

of Petrarchan courtesans,

Sonnets save Al Purdy’s

whistled punchline –

Will Shakespeare’s final coupling.

Through Ontario’s roadside bugloss,

Triolets triple under Tercet skies.

Blank Verse awakens T.S. Eliot with four

measured espressos, revving Gaspereau’s

Earle Birney topsy-turvy

over Valancy Crawford.

Breathing metric, Sharon Thesen races

after Emily Dickinson’s long dash —

coddled in Margaret Atwood’s palm.

Clambering into Pauline Johnson’s canoe,

Thomson Highway seines for the penultimate

metaphor to pen trickster Nanabush.

Images and similes pour forth

from MPs’ tippled lips

across parliaments, knessets, jirgas …

like a blast of deified Epics

from Brigit, Saraswati and Calliope.

Canada’s hope flies loon-feathered,

global blessings, not Elegies, but

Epithalamiums’ wedded peace.

[Italicized words: poetic forms.
Special Canadian poetic references: Valancy Crawford (1850 – 1887), Earle Birney’s novel, Topsy-Turvey, Pauline Johnson (1862 – 1913), Sharon Thesen’s poetry, Beginning of the Long Dash. Poetry Goddesses: Brigit (Celtic), Saraswati (Hindi), Calliope (Greek) Epic.]

Katerina Fretwell’s fifth book of poetry, Samsara: Canadian in Asia, was published by Pendas Productions in 2008. She chaired the Lowther Jury in 2006 and edited two anthologies for the Feminist Caucus in 2005 and 2007. She also exhibits and sells her art and sings choral tenor.

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