17. Trauma Head – Elee Kraljii Gardiner
18. Prison Industrial Complex Explodes – Mercedes Eng
19. Port of Being – Shazia Hafiz Ramji
week seventeen – 49.5
2019 to date: 835 KM
April is National Poetry Month, which was started in 1996 by the Academy of American Poets and shortly there after was picked up on by the League of Canadian Poets, and which I cannot recall knowing about until after my departure from The Capilano Review, which is weird to me but probably anyone reading this is thinking are you starting a coven? that’s too many whiches, which is now making me wonder if since it’s witches is it really whiches or is it whichs. I suppose I could look it up but I’m not sure I’ll find what I’m looking for. All that to say that I thought that April would be a good time to pick up a few of the poetry collections that have been languishing in my to-read pile for a while, and all three of these women I first discovered through The Capilano Review. As it turns out, I am one of the lucky few to have a copy of the handmade Trauma Head chapbook and by turns out lucky I mean I didn’t know that there were only 50 made. EKG expanded the work into a full book that explores her near-death experience and recovery from having a stroke. I loved the bits of Kierkegaard sprinkled through it too. Eng’s 2018 Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize-winning book provides a scathing critique of the prison system and its institutionalized racism. It is deeply personal, pulling from correspondence with her incarcerated father. SHR’s Port of Being is a short collection with plenty of depth and won the 2017 Robert Kroetsch Award for Innovative Poetry. I enjoyed peering into these pieces and finding little bits of Vancouver inside. I have a few more poetry collections on the go so my poetry month might spill over into May.
Yesterday I go onto a Mobi bike and rode over to Kitsilano and then ran the last 16 KM of the BMO Vancouver Marathon route from Point Grey Road over the Burrard Bridge and around Stanley Park clockwise ending up at the corner of Pender and Bute and it was a bit of an adventure thanks to winds between 40 and 50 KM/H that were in my face for most of the route. As I rounded the Seawall east of the Lions Gate Bridge park rangers were in the process of closing it down. Suffice it to say all fingers are crossed and all wood knocked for not that sort of weather next weekend. And so begins the constant weather app checking. With a week for meteorologists to finish making up their mind it is currently looking cool and wet with a bit of a breeze. Given the choice between that and the heat of last year, I’ll take the wet though I’d really prefer it to be merely cool and damp. On Wednesday I was back at the Point Grey track with the Mile2Marathon crew and had a good workout and then just as good conversation with Coach Kevin about May 5 and since then and including yesterday I’m feeling pretty good about how things might go down in a week. I’m also inspired by results from last night’s London Marathon and this morning’s marathon in Eugene, OR where a handful of Strava friends and M2M teammates ran excellent races posting results that have me excited for them, as well as feeling the pressure to perform just as well. I’m looking forward to finding out.