From the Archive: Amy Ireland Interview (CAROUSEL 39)

From the Archive: Amy Ireland Interview (CAROUSEL 39)

It Amy Ireland is an experimental poet and theorist, co-conspiring with arcane and esoteric vectors of poetic andtheoretical thought. As a PhD Candidate in Creative Writing at the School of the Arts and Media at the University of New South Wales, Ireland’s work develops concepts embedded within the prefix xeno-, denoting that which is unfamiliar, strange and alien. Following this trajectory, Ireland is writing her thesis on xenopoetics, which engages various poetry projects that involve

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USEREVIEW 044 (Capsule): Ghost Tracks

USEREVIEW 044 (Capsule): Ghost Tracks

Sneha Subramanian KantaGhost Tracks (Louisiana Literature Press, 2020)ISBN 978-0-94508-351-1 | 30 pp | $8.95 USD #CAROUSELreviews#USEREVIEWEDNESDAY There are ghosts everywhere in Kanta’s chapbook of poetry. The ghosts “freckle silence” and “remove fishhooks from animal bodies” and are “carried on the wind” with “hands full of flowers.” We are told by the title to expect tracks, traces, as if the ghosts were deer disappearing into the woods, but instead the ghosts are moving about in front

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From the Archive: Cole Closser ‘A Drip in the  Mouth of a Horse’ Interview (CAROUSEL 39)

From the Archive: Cole Closser ‘A Drip in the Mouth of a Horse’ Interview (CAROUSEL 39)

American cartoonist Cole Closser has been called a master of “butchered quotes and borrowed styles” — a man whose ink-stained dreams tend to have a yellowed, nostalgic residue covering them, and whose drawing style is constantly in a state of technical re-examination and flux. Like the abstract expressionist painter Jackson Pollock — who is said to have noticed a drip in the mouth of a horse in Picasso’s mural-sized oil painting Guernica, and from that

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USEREVIEW 043: Tower of Babelfish

USEREVIEW 043: Tower of Babelfish

In this traditional review, A.G. Pasquella makes use of a wide range of tools — from linguistic theory to allusions to The Simpsons — in an effort to parse the meaning of The Untranslatable I (Gordon Hill Press, 2021), the latest poetry collection from the Trillium Award winning author Roxanna Bennett. ISBN 978-1-77422-017-7 | 88 pp | $20 CAD #CAROUSELreviews#USEREVIEWEDNESDAY Pain cannot be translated. We can never know how a person actually feels. In Roxanna

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USEREVIEW 042: Johanna Hedva’s Mad Epistemology

USEREVIEW 042: Johanna Hedva’s Mad Epistemology

As gender and genre-bending as its subject, this experimental review by Sarah Cavar skips between theory, memoir, and experimental poetry in order to keep pace with Johanna Hedva’s hybrid literary collection, Minerva the Miscarriage of the Brain (Sming Sming Books + Wolfman Books, 2020), which “incorporates plays, performances, an encyclopedia, essays, autohagiography, hypnagogic and hypnapompic poems.” ISBN 978-1-953189-00-4 | 194 pp | $18 USD #CAROUSELreviews#USEREVIEWEDNESDAY What I needed to make this review: Twitter. My Chemex. Crystal

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From the Archive: Jessica Bromley Bartram (CAROUSEL 39)

From the Archive: Jessica Bromley Bartram (CAROUSEL 39)

JESSICA BROMLEY BARTRAM Skyscrapers When the city sleeps, it emerges, unfurling cloudlike from a ravine and stepping carefully over grumbling streets. Bleary-eyed drivers blink it away, their brains filled with thoughts of home or the next city, naming it Bridge Shadow or Passing Tree. Its missteps leave cars covered in stormy grey streaks that refuse to fade, drivers whose peripheral vision is now filled with flickering shadows, almost-forms almost visible if only they could turn

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USEREVIEW 041 (Capsule): A Map of Rain Days

USEREVIEW 041 (Capsule): A Map of Rain Days

Jennifer HoseinA Map of Rain Days (Guernica Editions, 2020)ISBN 978-1-771834-41-4 | 128 pp | $20 CAD #CAROUSELreviews#USEREVIEWEDNESDAY “My mother’s toes are / crooked and curled / in a misguided, arthritic map / of rain days,” writes Jennifer Hosein in the eponymous poem of her debut collection, A Map of Rain Days. In these lines there is a conflation of body and world, but also of space and time. Time becomes an entity that is spatially

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USEREVIEW 040 (Capsule): Gold Rush

USEREVIEW 040 (Capsule): Gold Rush

Claire CaldwellGold Rush (Invisible Publishing, 2020)ISBN 978-1-988784-46-5 | 80 pp | $17.95 CAD #CAROUSELreviews#USEREVIEWEDNESDAY Writing about pioneers and summer camp risks a confrontation with banal, or even dangerous, sentimentalism. However, in her sophomore poetry collection, Gold Rush, Claire Caldwell is circumspect, scrutinizing and assessing her subjects with the critical eye they deserve — and she never mistakes pyrite for gold. See, for instance, her poem ‘After the Gold Rush,’ in which the speaker declares, “We

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USEREVIEW 039 (Capsule): The Weight of the Heart

USEREVIEW 039 (Capsule): The Weight of the Heart

Theresa KishkanThe Weight of the Heart (Palimpsest Press, 2020)ISBN 978-1-98928-747-7 | 120 pp | $15.95 CAD #CAROUSELreviews#USEREVIEWEDNESDAY It isn’t a spoiler to say that we never do find out exactly how much a heart weighs in the latest novella from prolific author Theresa Kishkan, but what is clear is that the heart weighs more than we might be given to expect. The story foreshadows this figurative surprise with its opening lines: “The closer I got

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From the Archive: Fan Wu (CAROUSEL 39)

From the Archive: Fan Wu (CAROUSEL 39)

FAN WU from Songs Heard on The River Styx Charon Before Breakfast Charon moves along his sloop, fern-heavy with morning sleep.He rubs his eyes then his wrists together.Standing sexless, two words — pistil, stamen — flash across his mind, illustrated like in the Grade 9 Biology textbook he once read for proof of nature’s perfect design, lovewise.An anchor tethers him to the limitless sea.Anther and pollen.Something Lacan once said occurs to him:“Love is giving something

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USEREVIEW 038: Watch the Left Hand

USEREVIEW 038: Watch the Left Hand

Through a process of careful and combing traditional review, Leah Bobet is able to find and extract the half-concealed magic tricks and the mixtapes from Jen Sookfong Lee’s debut poetry collection The Shadow List (Wolsak & Wynn, 2021). ISBN 978-1-989496-28-2  | 96 pp | $18 CAD #CAROUSELreviews#USEREVIEWEDNESDAY Smudged lipstick, sleepless nights and a deft structural-linguistic game that cracks binary questions of self-worth like a hatching egg: Vancouver author Jen Sookfong Lee’s The Shadow List charts

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USEREVIEW 037 (Capsule): God Damned Avalon

USEREVIEW 037 (Capsule): God Damned Avalon

Paul Edward CostaGod Damned Avalon (Mosaic Press, 2020)ISBN 978-1-77161-532-7 | 108 pp | $17.95 CAD #CAROUSELreviews#USEREVIEWEDNESDAY Paul Edward Costa’s debut flash fiction collection, God Damned Avalon, is as chock-full of switchbacks as its paradoxical title — invoking a paradise that divinity has forsaken — should lead you to expect. Earning the name of their genre, the tales in this book are lightning-quick, though the subjects they depict sometimes span centuries, the rises and falls of

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From the Archive: Dash Shaw Interview (CAROUSEL 39)

From the Archive: Dash Shaw Interview (CAROUSEL 39)

“I wanted to be destroyed … and reborn.” Dash Shaw credits these words to a tattered old comic book, near the end of Cosplayers, a recent collection of his own comics about fan culture, cartooning history, creativity, and female friendship. Shaw’s teen girl protagonists have lucked into a stash of funnybooks by the legendary Jack ‘King’ Kirby (1917–1994), co-creator of the Fantastic Four, Captain America, and, in this instance, the 2001 comic book adaptation. Heedless

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USEREVIEW 036: A Colossal Problem

USEREVIEW 036: A Colossal Problem

There was supposed to be a review of Jeremy Colangelo’s debut short fiction collection Beneath the Statue (Now Or Never Publishing, 2020), but due to unforeseen circumstances, there will be none. To find out what led to this utter catastrophe, please read on. ISBN 978-1-98968-910-3 | 184 pp | $19.95 CAD #CAROUSELreviews#USEREVIEWEDNESDAY Dear Jade Wallace, Reviews Editor for CAROUSEL, Thank you for sending me a review copy of Jeremy Colangelo’s debut short fiction collection, Beneath

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USEREVIEW 035 (Capsule): I Know Something You Don’t Know

USEREVIEW 035 (Capsule): I Know Something You Don’t Know

Amy LeBlancI Know Something You Don’t Know (Gordon Hill Press, 2020)ISBN 978-1-928171-97-3 | 100 pp | $20.00 CAD #CAROUSELreviews#USEREVIEWEDNESDAY The poems of Amy LeBlanc’s debut poetry collection, I Know Something You Don’t Know, are as morally elusive as the best and grimmest old fairy tales, but also as narratively destabilized as we’ve come to expect contemporary poetry to be. Danger lurks in the empty spaces between every stanza break, but these poems offer no false

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From the Archive: Paige Cooper (CAROUSEL 38)

From the Archive: Paige Cooper (CAROUSEL 38)

PAIGE COOPER The Man from Atlantis Ingrid is my mother’s name. The only reason I’d ever have a daughter would be to name her Ingrid and let her cry herself to sleep. I’m sorry, I’m a sulker. I was warned. When her boyfriend wouldn’t marry her, Ingrid took his last name anyway and became Ingrid Vivian. When she was twenty, Vivian gave Ingrid an ultimatum: change in six months, or it’s over. They were driving

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USEREVIEW 034 (Capsule): Murmurations

USEREVIEW 034 (Capsule): Murmurations

Annick MacAskillMurmurations (Gaspereau Press, 2020)ISBN 978-1-554472086 | 96 pp | $20.95 CAD #CAROUSELreviews#USEREVIEWEDNESDAY I sat down at my writing desk to begin reading Annick MacAskill’s sophomore poetry collection Murmurations (Gaspereau Press, 2020), expecting to get through a few poems before going to bed. Instead, by the end of an hour or so, I had devoured the book completely. Murmurations, I think, invites this kind of reading. There is a through-line in the poems that is

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USEREVIEW 033: Geographies of Continuum: Lyric and Love

USEREVIEW 033: Geographies of Continuum: Lyric and Love

Attentive as a bird-watcher, reviewer Sneha Subramanian Kanta studies the wingbeats of Annick MacAskill’s sophomore poetry collection, Murmurations (Gaspereau Press, 2020). From landscape to lineation, this traditional review observes and appreciates the full scope of forces that give life to the text. ISBN: 978-1-554472086 | 96 pp | $21.95 CAD #CAROUSELreviews#USEREVIEWEDNESDAY Murmurations by Annick MacAskill is a meditation upon the topographies of love, where every essence is magnified by the presence of nature. In tenderness,

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USEREVIEW 032 (Capsule): Bones

USEREVIEW 032 (Capsule): Bones

Tyler PennockBones (Brick Books, 2020)ISBN 978-1-77131-521-0 | 128 pp | $20.00 CAD #CAROUSELreviews#USEREVIEWEDNESDAY “[T]hey forget / that we are bones / — resurrected from the bones of others,” writes Tyler Pennock, alluding both literally and figuratively to how, in the earth, skeletons slowly disintegrate so that their particles take on new functions in the larger ecosystem. Digested by detrivores, turned into fertile soil, the bones often eventually resurface to nourish the flora and fauna that

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From the Archive: Michael e. Casteels (CAROUSEL 38)

From the Archive: Michael e. Casteels (CAROUSEL 38)

MICHAEL E. CASTEELS 4 Poems The Cattle Business I was rousting some steers that had taken up residence in the house. I gathered a coil of rope and slung it over the pommel of my saddle. Some of these old mossyhorns had grown up here and had no wish to leave. A brindle steer lurched through the breezeway, scraping the walls with his horns. A twisty creek trickled down the front steps and pooled among

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