Slam Sunday: “Something You Might Not Know About Canada” by Ian Keteku

Nothing Gold Poetry.

Tongues sharper than genius, that put the punk back in punctuality that bite at whatever, whomever, who care

Welcome to Poetry Month! This month, I will be focusing on Canadian poets. This poem comes from the Strombo show, a talk show from the great white north. In this poem, Ian Keteku examines Canadian spoken word poetry in the way that only a Canadian spoken word poet can.

Poet’s website: http://www.ianketeku.com/

Poet’s twitter: https://twitter.com/ianketeku

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My Poetry Journey

“Poetry is not only dream and vision; it is the skeleton architecture of our lives. It lays the foundations for a future of change, a bridge across our fears of what has never been before.”

-Audre Lorde

To extrapolate from Audre Lorde, I believe that to write poetry is to be an agent of change, and therefore to be a poet is to have little metamorphoses over time. Poetry is a journey, not a destination.

Last year I talked about my journey as a poet, starting from the very beginning. I’d like to continue talking about my journey as a poet. And it counts for Canadian Poetry Month because I’m Canadian and a poet. 

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Prepare for geese. That is all.

Like most writing, with poetry one must read in their genre in order to improve. As I’ve grown as a poet, I’ve been reading more deeply into poetry. I have poems sent to my inbox every day, and I’ve been reading poetry books. My favourite has been Ariel by Sylvia Plath, who I will write about later this month. Ariel really opened my eyes on writing a collection of poetry, and I would recommend it to anyone who wants to explore theme in poetry more closely.

“Taking poetry seriously”, as I mentioned last year, has involved sending out poetry to journals, and working towards a poetry goal. My goal has been the creation of a chapbook manuscript around the theme of Greek mythology. I want to have my chapbook completed (that is to say, written and edited) by June so I can send it out to contests and publishers.

canadaGoose2

Sending poetry out like a flock of birds.

As I’ve matured as a poet, I’ve also started to experiment with form and with subject matter. Of course, I’ve written a lot about Greek mythology, but I’ve also written about events that happen around me, biblical figures and paid tribute to a favourite poem of mine. I used to write a lot of poetry about the infamous R., but as I’ve received treatment for PTSD my desire to write about him has lessened. I don’t want to waste any more energy writing about someone who has already taken so much of my life. My poetry is going to be a reflection of me, not of him.

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Pictured: R.

I wrote last year about the forms that I’d been experimenting with, and that list has been steadily growing. I’ve been writing villanelle, and experimenting with traditional Irish forms. I’ve never published any of these pieces online, so I can’t show any examples of my work. I’ve also continued working in tanka and free verse.

Of course, the journey is never over. I will keep working on my poetry in order to become better and better. I will start and end with a quote:

I wanna be the very best, like no one ever was!

-Ash Ketchum

Canadian Poets in Focus: Lorna Crozier

Lorna Crozier (1).jpg

“Though I would never have believed it as a teenager, you do move past things, outgrow the person you were. Sometimes, just by staying alive, you find you have become someone who can live in the world after all.”

My first Canadian poet in feature this month is a fellow Saskie: Lorna Crozier. She was born in Swift Current, Saskatchewan, and was educated at the Universities of Saskatchewan and Alberta. Before becoming a poet, Lorna worked as a high school English teacher and a guidance counsellor.

Lorna’s first published poetry appeared in Grain magazine, and she went on to publish 16 books of poetry. That’s not the reason I want to spotlight her, however. I want to spotlight her for the work she does to mentor other Canadian poets.

Lorna has served as a writer in residence for the Regina Public Library, Cypress Hills Community College and the University of Toronto. She has taught writing at the Banff School of Fine Arts, the Saskatchewan Summer School of the Arts, and the Sechelt Summer Writing Festival. Lorna makes appearances at writing events around the country, and has received five honourary doctorates. Lorna Crozier is also passionate about social and environmental causes as well as poetry.
You can find Lorna’s poetry here on her cool as heck website.

Poetry Month Introduction

Last year  I decided to dedicate my blog to poetry for the month of April to celebrate National Poetry Month. Because last year was such a success, I decided to bring back poetry month for it’s second year in a row.

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Here it comes…

With a little more emphasis on the “national” this year.

beaver

 

I don’t usually make a fuss over it, but I am Canadian and I’m proud of it! I live in one of the most beautiful countries in the world. Though the country may have it’s problems, I’d rather live in Canada than anywhere else.

Canada has a wonderfully diverse arts scene. Our artists are known the world over…for the most part. I was thinking yesterday and I realised that I could only name two Canadian poets that I didn’t know personally. How sad is that? I don’t know about my fellow Canucks, but I wasn’t taught about Canadian poets in any of my schooling.

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Instead of focusing on my own poetry this month, as I did last year, I decided to spend the month highlighting Canadian poetry. So, basically, prepare for beaver, moose and Canada goose pictures this year as opposed to the cat pictures of last year. The wonderful Shawn L. Bird (http://shawnbird.com/) and Matt Loeb (http://www.mattloeb.com/) will be stopping by and showing us a little something. I’m super excited for this month, and I hope you will all be enjoying it with me.

As we (don’t) say in Canada, goodbye, eh?

 

God bless,
Kelsey J.

Flash Friday: Chimera

Kelsey J. Mills

Handel had once been sure of many things, but now he was only sure of one: humans were not meant to have wings. His new appendages barely fit in his cage. Handel could feel every tendon and muscle and ligament in his wings as they ached in protest from being put in the tiny cage. And his wing itched, but every time he tried to scratch it, his talons would pierce his skin. His once crisp white feathers were sticky with dried blood.

They told him that there would be no side effects. Handel chose to believe them, even as he heard the observation room’s doors lock behind the scientists. His belief had only started to waiver when his back roared in agony and his fingernails grew and hardened into heavy claws before his eyes. He felt heavier.

The scientists had shuttled him from the observation room to his current…

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Blogging Vacation

Hello everyone,

You are probably wondering why, instead of seeing my regular content on the blog, you saw a reblogged piece from a few months ago. I’m taking a vacation from the blog this month to rethink my approach to blogging. I’ll be reblogging my most popular posts this month in lieu of new content.

I hope this break gives me time to make this blog better for you, my readers.

 

God bless,

Kelsey J.