29 February 2012

Ashes, Paper & Beans: 29 Feb 2012

Ashes, Paper & Beans: Host: Joe Blades. CHSR 97.9 FM, http://www.chsrfm.ca/ Fredericton, NB.

Richard Lemm & Jo Griffith reading at Odd Sundays at Molly's, 20 Nov 2011.

28 February 2012

staircase poem 21

by the hairs on my chin
& a voice both faraway
& near i'm learning things
for which there are
no words but i'm not
worried they're wordless
no need for everything
to have words or numbers
attached like a key tag

when in the gallery
writing these poems
composing on typewriter
in public performance
i am writing the report
for my master in education
an appendix actually
not the body tattooed
inked with citations

when in the gallery
am not in d'avray 145
with that part of this
trail of poems installation
& i'm not at home
in my bedroom office
with dishes piled up
in a kitchen sink
needing to be washed

when in the gallery
when in d'avray 145
& when in home office
writing & editing the report
worn clothes pile up high
needing to be washed & dried
fridge empties or food rots
before i cook or eat it & dust
grows as i & the yatak shed

staircase poem 20

sidewalks can hurt
snowbanks too
encrusted ice cuts
when breaking a fall
& i have fallen
twice this week
en route to galerie
charlotte glencross
once last thursday on scully
bonked my elbow & head
once today on aberdeen
slick black ice under
fresh snow both times
prefer walking cleared
parking lots & centre
of cleared-to-bare-asphalt
sidestreets—though that
means getting out of the way
of cars & trucks often—
but the walking is safer
than on fredericton sidewalks

blue sky & clouds
sun & snowflakes party

this isn't the poem
i had in mind to write
right now so i'll end it
& start another

25 February 2012

staircase poem 20

just us handcrafted
fine chocolate
spicy ginger bark

bowl of chili
with melted cheese
for my meal

cars not cleaned off
from the snowfall
will be encrusted
frozen by morning
trapped too if
not dug out

water on streets
& sidewalks & some
haven't been ploughed

change of footwear
for my return trip
because of wetness
a soaker on the way
home this afternoon

downstairs dancers
stretch & fling
legs high in air
make obstacle course
of staircase entrances

staircase poem 18

smile you're on camera
services offered
hot yogurt intensive
& fetish-lite fashion
no ballet today
instructor cancelled
because of the snowstorm

our hoot & peep performance
stuff installed in auditorium
with simple show name
ready for tonight's
salon connex discussion
about what matters in art

please do not
sit on stairs
this is a fire
thank you

this is a great office
this staircase landing
open for interaction
should get back here
by 6 pm to be writing
as people gravitate
towards the auditorium
& picaroons beer tasting
(bonus) before salon connex

staircase poem 17

there are things i need
to write about in my art
&/or my trail of poems
report to understand my
position & it might make
this not a poetic poem

there are now three fluxus artists
in my report—dick higgins yoko
ono & robert filliou—but i didn’t
label or identify them that way
haven't included someone's
definition of fluxus either

fluxus artists create happenings
& happenings have been in
my vocabulary since childhood
probably picked it up from the air
television radio papers & magazines
happenings have helped shape me

be-ins love-ins bed-ins sit-ins
all happenings pre-occupy movement
fluxus also big on the spontaneous
allen ginsberg's spontaneous mind
& first words best words mantra
from india or buddhist teachings

marcia tucker a proponent of spontaneous
in artmaking & curating both
do something & reflect on it later
i worked with her at the new museum
of contemporary art in nyc during
my curatorial internship there

other fluxus artists had roles
in the new york–nscad connect
& exchange over the years
they were in halifax when I was
growing up there since the mid '60s
long before going to art college

23 February 2012

staircase poem 16

in a shell game for digital media
what are skins vs shirts vs suits?
why not skin with body & heart
(not an either/or choice)?
fashion skin equals racism
&/or inferiority–superiority
complexes of power–powerless
power & abuse of power
or the cbc ticker tape typo
last night on power & politics
with evan solomon
: "two members
of congress get letters with
harmless power" & here am i
instantly feeling that all
members of congress parliament
senate house of representatives
house of lords & politburo too
should receive & honour letters
with harmless power—do no harm

& what if i'm in your 1%
or in another's 2% anal–cranial
inversion or if i'm called
tin-man succubus viral infection
he's a cylon : i'm a cylon
aren't you a cylon too?
what colour is your ejector
seat button? how do you feel …
how do you continue your days
once you pull your burnt carcass
from a crashed vehicle
build a funeral pyre to send
yourself godspeed away
while you (of necessity
for self-preservation) sit
upwind of that fire in onshore
nightwind radioactive with
your own destruction at hand

staircase poem 15

staff reporter with typewriter
on front line of revolution
war of independence redux
toppling the dictators
like their statues in squares

proposal to submit: a type-in
at alden nowlan house
windsor castle bar fredericton
some monday evening
an ashes paper & beans event
bring a manual typewriter
get a pint of picaroons
get them to be a sponsor
sit at a table & start
typing free-fall prose
poetry performance manifesto
or whatever strikes your keys

joe blades
here by chance
or by appointment

picanje i izdavaštvo
(jedana teorija)

postcards on this desk
fresh from the printer

got two feet on the floor
despite sambas and la bamba
playing loud in dance studio
fiddle lessons with katherine
moller in her studio upstairs

22 February 2012

Ashes, Paper & Beans: 22 Feb 2012

Ashes, Paper & Beans: Host: Joe Blades. CHSR 97.9 FM, http://www.chsrfm.ca/ Fredericton, NB.

Merideth Quartermain: from Matter (Recorded by/at Ottawa International Writers Festival Fall 2008).

R.C. Weslowski: "ww3: war on the worms", "memo from the gods", & "i've been thinking/it's about time".

Fredericton poetry reading PSAs.

Danadbang Kuwabong: "Intrasharra" & other poems (Recorded by/at Ottawa International Writers Festival Fall 2008).

Leap Forward! poetry reading 29 Feb

A World Poetry Movement
& Ashes, Paper, & Beans
Open Mic Reading

29 February 2012, 7 pm, Wednesday

Alden Nowlan House, 676 Windsor Street, Fredericton, NB

Contact joeblades@nb.aibn.com to read or for more info.

World Poetry Movement: www.wpm2011.org

21 February 2012

staircase poem 14

international poetry
wild mountain thyme
the scotch downstairs
distilled with water
from the highlands

readings as dialogue
amongst civilizations
or the poets thereof
here in the academy
glade in the forest

across the agean sea
today's nostalgic seek
plato's garden as if
he carved his name
in a stone bench or tree

they say he talks of trouble
poets might cause governments
falling like forests before
land-clearing bulldozers
poem song chant anthem

staircase poem 13

feel uninspired
like a table sitter
at church hall entrance
or a security guard
tasked to check visitors
you have an appointment with ...?
your papers please

some days it's
enough to do laundry
or sit in the sun with a book
reading with a cup of tea
or wineglass in hand
change happening
in life

too much sitting
in the same deskchair
at the same tensioned desk
surrounded by tasks not done
& notes for more always more
—those obligations
& ideas

or veg watching
pub library battlestar
across bright red yatak
carpet warm underfoot
african violet in bloom
on an endtable
under a lamp

20 February 2012

Found photo du jour

Found 19h, 20 February 2012 in anbl store/magasin 45, 380 York Street, Fredericton, NB. Likely a wallet fly-away.

staircase poem 12

poemcicles hang on wall
unlike icicles growing
from the roof edge

makar at work
yes—makar—not maker
old scots for poet
& author as skilled worker
in the wordsmithy

red ukulele & drum kit
walked upstairs to auditorium
white curtains on stage
performance on wednesday
pistols and petticoats: shadows
of sarah emma edmonds

collectively written &
acted play about a new
brunswick woman who
disguised herself to fight
in the american revolution/
war of independence
—time to dec the set &
rehearse rehearse rehearse
on the production stage

made & mailed a postcard
of ceci n'est pas un panneau
to goop in ottawa
before going to post office
found a goop postcard from hélèn
waiting there: my surprise!

17 February 2012

staircase poem 11

found on the floor
beside my open office
desk: a 75.00 price tag
& two parts of button—
silver on brown plastic—
likely from a coat
after this presentation
in my poem they are
destined to enter
my journal also on desk
with typewriter camera
& computer at hand

after-school halls liven
with young dancers
& piano tuner is at
work in auditorium
(said he hasn't seen
typewriter like this
in twenty-five years)
it drew stories out
of a woman here for
last weekend's bejewel
sale before art opening at
78 & cockburn at playhouse

staircase poem 10

put your heart
dart into happened
last saturday
so poster enters
this typewriter
behind the poem
being composed live

we interrupt this poem
to watch a bat flying
through the gallery
staircases and over
second floor landing
bridge to the violin
fiddle studio & offices

bat crawls under a door
into cooler space between
double-doors entrance
so close to winter cold
when it should be hibernating
so i photograph it & help
with a net catch & release

docent i am not
so i give an artist tour
walkthough of my trail
of poems installation
with skype video call
and toshiba notebook
for a faraway friend

staircase poem 9

it's agreed that i don't
look like the organic forum
setting itself up for tonight
not all acorns are under snow

outside the window closest
to my yellow tree photoprint
i see a delimbed tree trunk
probably was an old elm
in this city of stately elms
grey & off-white not painted
yellow like the tree
in republika srpska or the one
on avenue laval in montréal

if i treat my report
like an installation
in the report—poems too—
poems are images & not
just text words typed on paper
the report as art
the report is art

as marcia tucker says
art is what an artist does

CSAC bat upfront & personal

A bat was flying about inside the Charlotte Street Arts Centre and very near me in the Charlotte Glencross Gallery. Neat! It should have been in deep hibernation not flying about inside this ex-school.

Tim, the custodian, says we should name it Seymour, mascot of CSAC.

16 February 2012

staircase poem 8

pure euro relator
helping deliver poems
in the round: 2πr
the mulberry bush
holly released of its
snowload by afternoon sun
luge walks become slushy
slob ice longponds

the words in this poem
have been tested for lead
and found to be safe

baggie of pushpins
& tacks for fingered frenzy
not fingerfood—don't confuse

ceci n'est pas un panneau d'affichage
hommage to rené magritte functional
surrealism posted on art corkboard

found rubberised plastic green
nearly two-dimensional teapot
in walkway snow not or possibly
from mad hatter's tea party
—boardgame for alice imagined

15 February 2012

Ashes, Paper, & Beans: 15 Feb 2012

Ashes, Paper & Beans: Host: Joe Blades. CHSR 97.9 FM, http://www.chsrfm.ca/ Fredericton, NB.

Lesley Strutt reading works by Swedish poet Tomas Transtromer in translation into English (Ottawa: Tree Reading Series, 10 Jan 2012).

Vince Tinguely: "Have I Forgotten How To Write A Poem", "How Can I Help", "It Was The Beginning of the Twenty-First Century", "It's Good, It's Accurate", "Midget Love (Sansui Mix)", "Suture"; & "The Star Who Never Was".

Robyn Rowland: "From 'Dead Mother Poems'".

staircase poem 7

pink baby ballerinas (again)
as education phd students gather
what do they think of this experience?
might be worthy of a journal entry
or doc seminar discussion
next time met

might be stepping
around a fishing well
a pool of wishes
a school of kishes
red lips in the sunset
a sail or fin above snow

a walking voice box
talking pink heart
not red or blue valentine
sound check that mic
up close with lips close
and listen to the sounds

this is important attention
to detail ... and despite
grocery store specials
my love is not like
a red red lobster
in mid-february snow

my love lives far away
with lemon and banana
trees in the garden
and belled sheep on hills
overlooking an ocean blue
and island-filled

14 February 2012

media on Trail of Poems

With my "Sarajevo eye" photo.

12 February 2012

shdn vi zelebrat?

hek 2 hek kizs
frstd end uv vithse
dat var dar var
verget da fal
verget de lakz & planz
hogtide ratz on streetz
no rt no luv
dam harp

y du un vana ate me

f d proezre iz phict

zw lozt
pux balk lo
wrapt in mem lozt
lin & li
zebug hart


y dew i ean i ryte
xpoyed bi dezir 2 creat shit
kut da boxrsoff me
phucq da shit
lozt en ze phorzt
yamakan phjest
yo mo kno go
"i'm just a
krazy muthr fuk
livin it hup
in ze fazt lin"
(r sumting lik dat)
vasa ze yer urina
storie yer art

11 February 2012

blue brains 2

blue brains
blue boy
blue jewels
blue heart
blue moon
blue valentine
blue blood
blue sky
blue jeans
blue movies
blue funk
blue room
blue tooth
blue streak


action painting
street walkers
window watchers
observation post
academic researcher
cultural anthropologist
sexual sociologist
work ethnographer
lived experience practitioner
panopticon camera obscura
professor peeping tom
neighbourhood spy
academic busybody
non-innocent observer


binoculars out the window
pen is in hand on journal page
(again) i am a fieldnote
paintbrush dipped in water & paint
streched canvas primed & posed
i am a case study qualitative
qualified certifiable lettered
symbolized ethics problematised
active academic action activist


blue brains underwear
canvas is done made
blue sparkle ornament
& tin of vienna sausages

Blue Brains perform/ance video

My "Blue Brains" text bricolage from performance on Thursday, 9 Feb 2012.

Click on the title line above to watch a short video by WhiteFeather, or use this link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j5kNU-MO7yU

09 February 2012

staircase poem 6

rather have a point of entry
text vest than a dunce cap
and made to sit in classroom
corner—poet seems to have odd
awe of unfathomable magic
too deep to sound with rock
on a rope & education
not the schools of fishes
in the unseen sea beyond
mountain & valley river
mouth & the shore washed

hear that mournful violin
feel its aching cry pull haunts
from the woodwork brick & stone
snatches of voice & piano
drift from the auditorium
follow the black arrows
ignore the path closed/
detour around/ art gallery

sign on this gallery wall
to install bejewel weekend
clearance sale: store closed

downstairs in dance studio
really little littles gather
fuzzy teddy bears on the barre
their hands stretch up to reach
& their gaze with longing
when they must sit in a circle
at centre of the studio's floor
violin lesson ended and now
a woman with grey & magenta scarf
is playing a faster fiddle
small reel frag o're & o're

blue brains 1

am now in an insanely cold window box
owl's nest bookstore 390 queen street
frederiction new brunswick

semi-academic or pseudo-academic
in red longjohns multiple fleece
vests without any sheep harmed

journalism johns just wave at me
as they slowly drive queen street
cruising for performance artists


to keep writing & keep warm
where warm isn't possible
hunter waiting for game

like a duck-blind joe
one in a white labcoat
making field notes

flip chart art & markers
vienna sausages in window
i am not a sex artist


or am i? what am i?
not a trophy wife
cabin boy or temple virgin

foole for word association
as my fingers numb like a
guitar busker in winter

a streetworker wearing
almost nothing—to be seen
& hired like a day labourer


not for love but illusion
or relief or something else
risk repulsion attraction

those tighty-whiteys
joe fresh style frais
underwear on or a canvas

an image or story everywhere
no sex workers have i seen
so far today (that i know of)


but who is a sex worker
in this call centre province?
who has not sold of themselves?

not just work for money
but illusions of love or comfort
for shelter and sustenance

to run from abuse or neglect
into exploitation of self
and/or control by ______


and me a bluenoser
with cold blue fingers
exposing blue brains

08 February 2012

Ashes, Paper & Beans: 8 Feb 2012

Ashes, Paper & Beans: Host: Joe Blades. CHSR 97.9 FM, http://www.chsrfm.ca/ Fredericton, NB.

Catherine Chandler. Poems: People, places, & things.

Jason Heroux. Poems from Memoirs of an Alias and Emergency Hallelujah books.

Fredericton arts PSAs.

Susan Cormier. "Pinned: Five men of Canadian poetry".

rob mclennan. "open mic poems".

staircase poem 5

perched like a partridge in sun
this cold clear february morning
windows to be reinstalled and
documents ghosted off and back
on like the stars on star sticker
fallen off someone's pet beach rock
with crab sticker and metallic snowflake
on the wainscoting ledge outside
the dance studio with a doll propped
up in the corner above the box
of lost and found treasures
and me in my staircase landing
corner slowing in sunlight
feeling its heat warm my head

staircase poem 4

sink: please wash out
art supplies in here
instead of washroom thanks
free verse not paint-
by-number poem kits
remember having a tin
of pain pucks brush and
paper—ordinary paper
not watercolour or artist—
and i was painting small
landscapes in a passenger
seat during family drives
action landscape painting

crisp morning after full
moon academic cage match 
to be or to un-b might
be a research question
qualitative self-interviewing
vs ontario tory mp's quest
for when life begins that begs
his understanding of what
is life and how/when/if
it is self-sustained human
life he asks about or
a rebirth resemblance
of a new politician

07 February 2012

staircase poem 3

sunlight streams in
though clouds and tall windows
bare tree branches with exposed
squirrel nests far from ground
i see myself reflected
in window in plexiglas cube
in the black of my blog page
with poet vest above my head
and an unseen headache
pinching above my eyes
woke in panic today
don't know why—am
the human behind this poem
here by chance or by
appointment like thursday
afternoon's doc seminar
(faculty of education
doctor of philosophy
students) presentation
after hoot & peep performance
in owl's nest windowbox
saw a fly—fruitfly-sized—
caught in the wet blue
paint covering "let's
talk science" on my
prop or hero's brain
for that performance

staircase poem 2

call for auditions
a career in poetry
rehydrating beer
typewriter heard
around the world
fredericton to izmir
and back pinging
in my head ex-school
hallway and kindergarten
classroom empty of kids
gone home for the day
just teachers cleaning up
and preparing for tomorrow
like the piano tuner
on the baby grand
in the auditorium
playing keys different
than on this typewriter
with its forest or hunter
green keys white characters
like deer tail alerts
as words leap and scatter
beyond my thick fingers
and a need to create

06 February 2012

Hoot & Peep Mini Performance Festival






FRI, FEB 10. 10-1 pm, CYNTHIA RYDER. 1-4 pm, JO GRIFFITH.

SAT, FEB 11. 10-1 pm, JOE BLADES. 1-4 pm, CYNTHIA RYDER.


MEGAN MACKAY – INVERSE EROTICA points out the absurdity of assigning roles to costume through fantasy. MacKay adopts the moves of an erotic dancer who puts on clothing until she has become a sexless, amorphous blob of fabric.

WHITEFEATHER – FIXATION STATION explores obsessive bodily engagement in the form of oral fixation. WhiteFeather’s performance involves lipstick, watercolour paper and sunflower seeds in the shell.

JOE BLADES – BLUE BRAINS will be a word association performance based on the idea of academic intellectual congestion and notions of attraction and the uncomfortable.

SHAUN BARTONE & CYNTHIA RYDER – TEMPEST IN A TEAPOT: an exploration of sexual repression. Under a picture of the Queen, Cynthia and Shaun will sip tea while reading passages from banned books. Simultaneously screening in the adjacent window will be the video Slut: A Drama in One Word alternating with found films of tea services from around the world.

CYNTHIA RYDER – FOOT WORSHIP. A study of our obsession with brand, style, and the appeal of the shoe, Cynthia will be crafting an altar from her 60+ pairs of shoes and boots.

AMANDA JARDINE – DECOLUMNIZATION will explore the expected disconnect between theory and sexuality in the academic community by using live creative nonfiction writing (in column form) to bridge this gap.

JO GRIFFITH – ARTEFACTS/X-COLONEL WILLIAMS. The police interrogation of Colonel Williams plays continuously while endless nonsensical flow charts are made to document the absence of reason for the crimes.

CANDACE MOOERS – LESSONS IN LOYALTY/CONFESSIONS will be the reading of a S&M script without following any of the emotional cues for audio performance, using a voice mixer and homemade radio transmitter.


Jo Griffith works in criminal justice and explores related themes through performance and art.

Shaun Bartone is a Sociology Instructor at UNB Fredericton and a queer performance artist, musician, and poet.

WhiteFeather is an artist, writer, educator and arts administrator known for both her engaging strangeness and (sometimes) intimidating

Joe Blades is an artist, poet, and publisher in Fredericton, whose Trail of Poems is on display in Galerie Charlotte Glencross
Gallery, CSAC, 1 Feb to 15 March.

Cynthia Ryder is an award-winning metalsmith, visual artist, fetish model, and proponent of radical relationships.

Amanda Jardine is an overeducated, underemployed weirdo who calls
Fredericton home (even though it’s not); she survives off local produce and witticism.

Candace Mooers has been a community radio broadcaster since 1997. Once upon a time, she also worked for a S&M audio production company.

Megan MacKay is a Fredericton-based writer and comedian who believes that she is invisible when her eyes are closed.

Amanda, the first performer in Hoot & Peep started at 1 pm, today. She is being photographed by WhiteFeather.

Owl's Nest Bookstore, 390 Queen St, Fredericton, NB.

staircase poem 1

on the mythical beast
or machine once again
back in the saddle roaring
to go go go from this landing
this pseudo-office of poet
in the stairwell & hallway
of charlotte street arts centre
the former charlotte street school
outside a reduced-scale version
of new brunswick legislature
in red brick not sandstone

art opening cacophony
of guitar lessons in former
principal's office violin
& fiddle in the studio upstairs
baby ballerinas with moms
who say they haven't touched
their own toes in years
followed by a stream of irish
dancers—riverdance girls
backdrop soundscape for
opening remarks and poetry