Archive for October, 2006


…and the gobble-uns’ll git ya ef ya don’t watch out!

October 31, 2006

c’est l’hallowe’en! (clap clap clap) c’est l’hallowe’en! (clap clap)

from six to nine years old, i was obsessed with a hallowe’en poem. i had it memorized, and would recite it to my little brother or myself or anyone else who might listen. when i moved from indiana to ontario, i lost the book and slowly forgot the poem as i drifted into my teen years. this morning, i woke up determined to remember, at the very least, the poem’s refrain, hoping that it might lead me to the entire poem.

work, brain…!

and as i puzzled over breakfast, and washed my face, and dressed, a rhythm for the refrain drifted to me… “and the [blah blah blah blah blah blah] if you don’t watch out.” could this be from the poem? i struggled to remember more. i sat down at my browser, and started to type what i could remember, and suddenly the word ‘goblins’ came. yes!

my long-lost favourite kids’ poem: “little orphant annie” by hoosier poet james whitcomb riley. and, imagine, the u of t poetry site has the full text of the poem online!

An’ one time a little girl ‘ud allus laugh an’ grin,
An’ make fun of ever’ one, an’ all her blood-an’-kin;
An’ wunst, when they was “company,” an’ ole folks wuz there,
She mocked ‘em an’ shocked ‘em, an’ said she didn’t care!

well, happy hallowe’en!


9 days to HATCH workshop

October 28, 2006

excitement’s mounting around my house for our upcoming week-long residency at harbourfront centre, where we’ll workshop wide slumber and then present our experiments on nov. 11 & 12 (8pm). much activity in the interim:

  • yesterday, i had a charmed visit to leaside high school, where conor attended. high-energy writer’s craft class featured writing exercises, readings, and Q&A. greatly looking forward to a return visit next spring.
  • today, we launched mark miller’s a certain respect for tradition and david lee’s the battle of the five spot (both mercury) at art of jazz (distillery district). kiki misumi (cellist), reg schwager (guitarist), and david virelles (pianist) stole my heart during an impromptu jam.
  • monday, i’m at marc garneau collegiate institute, writer’s craft. i always get a rush visiting kathy jonathan’s classes, so this’ll be fun!
  • fall books season at mercury = go go go. lovely, good going but going nonetheless.
  • saturday, potential contact improv workshop.
  • sunday, hamilton for gritLIT festival. also, dad arrives for brief visit from the sault.

though most of my last two weeks has been overwhelmed by HATCH prep, i have noticed three newish canadian publishers sashay through my e-mail: chaudiere books (ottawa, publishing monty reid and others), snare books (montreal, showcasing jason christie, angela carr, zoe whittall, and more), west coast line books (vancouver, featuring roger farr, reg johanson, natalie simpson). books, books, books. what do you think of the emergence of new poetry publishers?


HATCH: poster

October 26, 2006


review: WSfL in Black Ink

October 26, 2006

aaron tucker reviews wide slumber for lepidopterists in the new montreal literary blog black ink.


weekly update

October 25, 2006

this week’s been hectic, administrative, lovely, challenging, and collaborative.

  • spent some time creating a poster and flyers for our HATCH project.
  • conor confirmed new commutiny collaborators mika collins (performer) and susanna hood (movement designer). tremendously exciting!
  • saw elizabeth treadwell trio @ gladstone, featuring the loveliest audience i’ve ever seen… as in, i am considering attending another treadwell show (excellent entertainment) just to encounter the audience again. have you ever had this experience?
  • attended the chb fall launch where conversation was the order of the evening.
  • books are off to the printers @ mercury and i’m knee-deep in promo.
  • received an amazing envelope from karen hannah’s temple u creative writing workshop, including their written responses to wide slumber. i’m in the process of formulating a reply.
  • read at the box last night, which featured an eclectic mix of artists including myfanwy ashmore, allen kaeja, benoît casas, velcrow ripper, and john southworth. got to visit with high-school friend nate and new friend eliza; saw alixandra, mark, maggie, maria, and john ever so briefly.
  • tonight: always a flurry of activity. i’m at the north york public library for a young voices event, though my ears will be straining towards ryerson where the enchanting oana avasilichioaei is reading; please let me know how the event is if you attend.

Statements on desire

October 21, 2006

Harbourfront Centre asked me to write an artistic statement on my relationship to ‘desire’ for their 2007 ideas-based programming. my response incorporates text from and

Statements on desire
“the language we use / is the language we desire” – Jill Hartman

Desire wants something very strongly. Desire wants to have sexual relations. Desire wishes, craves, longs, aspires, fancies, yearns, hankers, hungers, enthuses, yens, itches, joneses, lusts.

Desire is a potato of a pink-skinned variety with yellow, waxy flesh.

Desire is from Middle English, Old French, Latin.

Desire is a concept in Lacanian psychoanalytic theory, tanha in Buddhist philosophy, a thought that leads to an action on which microeconomic theory is based.

Desire fixates on the sensual materials of language, the sonic production of phonemes of morphemes, strung together in words in sentences in senses or the visual suggestion of a letter and the movement indicators of syllables, stresses, and punctuation.

Desire is a ship, wrestler, telenovela, documentary, comic-book character. Desire is words in and out of orifices, luscious, tangled in the saliva and wax of bodies.

Desire is a Bob Dylan album, a Pharoahe Monch album, a song by U2 by Talk Talk by Geri Halliwell by Do As Infinity by 2 Unlimited by Airway Lanes by Ozzy Osbourne. Desire is a Polish R&B band.

Desire is passion is eagerness is enthusiasm determination sensuality passion, passion.

Desire is the shapes and sounds of letters and the body’s physical response to text. Desire’s eyes move across the page. Desire mouths words.

Desire mouths, oh yes.


Wide slumber @ HATCH

October 20, 2006


TORONTO, October 19, 2006 – Harbourfront Centre’s HATCH: emerging performance projects series kicks off for 2006/07 with Theatre Commutiny’s page-to-stage translation of a.rawlings’ book of poetry, Wide slumber for lepidopterists.

What happens when a person, obsessed with a subject, dreams at night; does the subject affect how she thinks, how she dreams, how her body processes information? If a poet writes poems during sleep, how might a lepidopterist work while she sleeps? What effect does intimate examination of insects have on long-term information processing and subconscious behaviour? Wide slumber for lepidopterists explores these questions through a dynamic combination of sound, movement, and visual art.

“[A] full-body experience… fabulous.” – T.L. Cowan,

“Affected by her background in dance and theatre, rawlings’ text has a kinetic aspect, an awareness of the body and the breath, which is unusual in such linguistically innovative writing. She brings a vocabulary of dance and the body to her consideration of how to approach text as an active, moving site, asking, ‘How can sound translate into text, text into movement, movement into text? How can a page act as a stage for words?’” — derek beaulieu, Calgary FFWD

Tickets ($15) for HATCH are now available through the Harbourfront Centre Box Office. To order by phone: 416-973-4000.

Saturday, November 11, 8pm
Sunday, November 12, 8pm
Harbourfront Centre, Studio Theatre
235 Queen’s Quay West, Toronto

Written by a.rawlings
Directed by Conor Green
Conceptual design by Matt Ceolin
Lighting design by Geoff Bouckley
Sound design and original music by Richard Windeyer
Performed by Amanda Brugel and a.rawlings


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