Issues

No. 217 Winter 2021


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Cover · Contents · Book Reviews · Contributor Notes

Issue 217 cover art by Colleen Heslin

Contents:

Winner:
2021
Constance Rooke Creative Nonfiction Prize

Poetry
  • Sharon McCartney, "Not So Much That We Foresee What Our Lives Will Be, But That Our Lives Become What We Foresee," "Why Couldn't It Have Been," "Void ab initio," and "On the 41st Anniversary of Chairman Mao's Death"    
  • Muyaka bin Haji al-Ghassaniy, "The Ponds Ran Out of Water" and "Gossipers are Gossiping" translated by Richard Prins
  • Dawn MacDonald, "Roadside Wildflowers of the Northwest," "First Things," and "ONLY GENIUS CAN SOLVE THIS PUZZLE"
  • Kai Conradi, "In B's Truck II" and "The Fawn"
  • Chinua Ezenwa-Ohaeto, "A History That Once Was and Still Is"
  • Rocco de Giacomo, "If You Pluck a Babylonian Kid from the Banks"
  • Patrick Grace, "Dastardly," "The Circuit," and "Afloat"
Fiction
  • Stephen Finucan, "Wildlife"
  • Carousel Calvo, "Typhoon Ruping"
  • Kanza Javed, "Worry Doll"
  • Ayaz Pirani, "Battle of Waterloo"
Creative Nonfiction
  • Laura Vukson, "Birthed Twice"
  • Nataly Shaheen, "Ali-Mohammad"
  • Sharni Wilson, "Segedínský Guláš"
  • Maria Hetherton, "In the Garden of Gethsemane"
  • Jaime Sugiyama, "How to Throw Away a Buddha"
Reviews
  • Poetry

  • Selina Boan, Undoing Hours
    (Gibsons: Nightwood Editions, 2021)
    (Reviewed by Amanda Merritt)

    The Essential Elizabeth Brewster, edited by Ingrid Ruthig
    (Erin: Porcupine's Quill, 2021)
    (Reviewed by Rhonda Batchelor)

    Leanne Dunic, One and Half of You
    (Vancouver: Talonbooks, 2021)
    (Reviewed by Yvonne Blomer)

    RC Weslowski, My Soft Response to the Wars
    (n.p.: Write Bloody North, 2021)
    (Reviewed by David Eso)

    Louise B. Halfe-Sky Dancer, awâsis – kinky and dishevelled
    (Kingston: Brick Books, 2021)
    (Reviewed by Jay Ruzesky)

    Nonfiction

  • Kelley Jo Burke, Wreck: A Very Anxious Memoir
    (Regina: Radiant Press, 2021)
    (Reviewed by Kate Kennedy)
  • Mentionables

  • Us, Now: Stories from the Quilted Collective, edited by Lisa Moore
    (St. John's: Breakwater Books, 2021)

    P. K. Page, Metamorphosis: Selected Children's Literature, edited by Margaret Steffler
    (Erin: Porcupine's Quill, 2020)

    Patricia Robertson, Hour of the Crab
    (Fredericton: Goose Lane, 2021)

    David Adams Richards, Darkness
    (Toronto: Doubleday, 2021)

    (All reviewed by Book Reviews Editor Jay Ruzesky)

Cover
  • Colleen Heslin, Full of limited potential, 2021
    Dye on sewn canvas
  • 224 cm x 203 cm
  • Courtesy of the artist and Monte Clark Gallery
  • Photograph courtesy of the artist
Contributor Notes

    MUYAKA BIN HAJI AL-GHASSANIY (1776–1840), the earliest known named secular Swahili poet, is celebrated for his use of the mashairi quartet, still the predominant form of Swahili verse. His work was recorded from the memory of elderly Mombasan poets in the late nineteenth century by William Ernest Taylor and Mwalimu Sikujua.

    RHONDA BATCHELOR’s fourth poetry collection is Allow Me (2021). Her poems, reviews, and essays have appeared in many journals and anthologies. 

    YVONNE BLOMER, an award‐winning travel writer, poet, and past Poet Laureate of Victoria, BC, is author of Sugar Ride: Cycling from Hanoi to Kuala Lumpur (2017), a travel memoir, and The Last Show on Earth (forthcoming). She edited Refugium: Poems for the Pacific (2017) and Sweet Water: Poems for the Watersheds (2021). She lives on the traditional territories of the W̱SÁNEĆ.

    CAROUSEL CALVO is a Filipino‐Canadian writer. She lives with her cat frank.

    KAI CONRADI is a queer and trans writer who grew up in K’ómoks territory in Cumberland, BC and is the author of the chapbook Notes From the Ranch. Their work has appeared in Poetry, The Malahat Review, PRISM International, and Grain, and was shortlisted for the 2019 Journey Prize.

    ROCCO DE GIACOMO’s poetry has appeared in literary journals in Canada, Australia, England, Hong Kong, and the USA. His latest collection is Brace Yourselves (2018); his next, Casting Out, will appear in 2022.

    JUSTINA ELIAS was born and raised in Winnipeg. Her work has appeared in Room Magazine, The Puritan, and elsewhere. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Guelph and currently works at Munro’s Books in Victoria.

    DAVID ESO earned his PhD in 2021 from UVic’s English Department. He is the author of scholarly and creative work as well as the editor of The Poetry of Robert Kroetsch, Where the Nights Are Twice as Long, and Leo Ferrari’s Globularist Hoax manuscript.

    CHINUA EZENWA-OHAETO is from Owerri‐Nkworji in Nkwerre, Imo state, Nigeria and grew up between Germany and Nigeria. His work has appeared in AFREADA, The Massachusetts Review, Salamander, Vallum, and elsewhere.

    STEPHEN FINUCAN is the author of the story collections Happy Pilgrims and Foreigners, and the novel The Fallen. He and his family live in BC.

    PATRICK GRACE is a queer writer living on the unceded lands of the Coast Salish peoples, where he works as an elementary teacher and as managing editor of Plenitude Magazine. His first chapbook, Dastardly, was just published (Anstruther).

    COLLEEN HESLIN is an artist whose innovative, textile‐based methods reconsider modern histories of art and craft and social aspects of painting regarding gender and labour. Recipient of the 2021 Tanabe Prize for British Columbia painters, she lives and works on traditional Tla’amin territory in qathet.

    MARIA HETHERTON is thrilled to be writing after many years teaching. Her nonfiction appears in Epoch, The Waking: Ruminate Online, Wayfarer Magazine, and Windhover. She lives with her husband in northern New Mexico.

    KANZA JAVED, author of the novel Ashes, Wine and Dust, has work in American Literary Review, The Punch Magazine, Salamander, and forthcoming in The Greensboro Review. Her story “Rani” won the Reynolds Price Prize for Fiction 2020. Her stories have been finalists for the Salamander Short Fiction Award 2020, The 51st New Millennium Award for Fiction, and Robert Watson Literary Prize 2021.

    KATE KENNEDY is a poet, editor, and reviewer. Originally from Lillooet, BC, she now lives in Victoria.

    DAWN MACDONALD lives in Whitehorse, Yukon, where she was raised off the grid. She holds a degree in applied mathematics. Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in Canadian Literature, FOLIO, Full Bleed, Grain, Riddle Fence, and Understorey.

    SHARON MCCARTNEY is the author of Villa Negativa (2021) and six other books of poetry. She has an MFA from the University of Iowa’s Writers’ Workshop and an LL.B. from the University of Victoria.

    AMANDA MERRITT’s debut collection, The Divining Pool, was nominated for the 2018 Gerald Lampert Memorial award. Her work was selected for the 2020 CBC Poetry Prize and Pacific Spirit Poetry Prize, and long‐listed for Aesthetica’s 2017 Creative Writing Award and The Malahat Review’s 2014 Open Season Awards.

    AYAZ PIRANI’s books include Happy You Are Here (2016), Kabir’s Jacket Has a Thousand Pockets (2019), and Bachelor of Art (2020). His work recently appeared in ARC Poetry, Antigonish Review, and Guest 16. How Beautiful People Are is forthcoming from Gordon Hill Press.

    RICHARD PRINS is a New Yorker who has lived, worked, studied, and recorded music in Dar es Salaam. He is currently pursuing an MFA in literary translation at Queens College. Publications include Gulf Coast, jubilat, Ploughshares, and “Notable” mentions in Best American Essays and Best American Travel Writing.

    JAY RUZESKY, a member of The Malahat Review’s editorial board since 1989, is the author of three collections of poetry, a travel memoir, In Antarctica: An Amundsen Pilgrimage, and a novel, The Wolsenburg Clock.

    NATALY SHAHEEN is a Lebanese‐Canadian and an ESL‐Communications professor at Sheridan College. She is an emerging writer, longlisted for the 2020 CBC Nonfiction Prize for “Ali‐Mohammad,” from her in‐progress memoir Lost in Them. She is coeditor of an in‐progress anthology written by Sheridan’s ESL students.

    JAIME SUGIYAMA is a writer working in Toronto. He is of mixed Japanese and Italian heritage. His essays and poetry have been published in The Globe and Mail and The Impressment Gang.

    LAURA VUKSON is Tlicho Dene, a mother, and writer. Her non-fiction work has been published in The Globe and Mail and shortlisted for PRISM International’s Creative Nonfiction Contest. She is Executive Director of ArtsCan Circle, a charity connecting Indigenous youth with artists, and co‐runs Sweetwater Writers Workshop in Parry Sound. Twitter: @lauravukson. Instagram: laura_vukson.

    SHARNI WILSON is an Aotearoa New Zealand writer of fiction and a literary translator from the Japanese. Her short fiction has appeared in Landfall, Pidgeonholes, and Takahē, among others. She was a finalist for Lunch Ticket’s 2020 Gabo Prize. sharniwilson.com.