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Rachel Zolf on Juliana Spahr: The Transformation thinks wit(h)ness

Rachel Zolf on Juliana Spahr: The Transformation thinks wit(h)ness

This essay was originally written as part of Laynie Browne’s project to curate essays on the “poet’s novel”  in mid-2013.A The Transformation, Juliana Spahr. Atelos, 2007 Thinking thought usually amounts to withdrawing into a dimensionless place in which the idea of thought alone persists. But thought in reality spaces itself...
Jeramy Dodds: The Poetic Edda

Jeramy Dodds: The Poetic Edda

  Excerpt from Jeramy Dodds’ The Poetic Edda, Coach House 2014, by permission. Jeramy Dodds’s first collection of poems, Crabwise to the Hounds, won the Trillium Book Award for Poetry and was shortlisted for the Griffin Poetry Prize. His poems have won the CBC Literary Prize and the Bronwen Wallace...
Nicole Brossard: The Frame Work of Desire

Nicole Brossard: The Frame Work of Desire

Motivation Motivation is defined as “the action of (conscious and unconscious) forces that determine behavior.” We ought therefore to ask ourselves what is the source of our motivation, so as to identify the reasons and motives [les motifs et les mobiles] that generate and nourish feminist consciousness, and at the same time to understand how...
Gail Scott: Feminist at the Carnival

Gail Scott: Feminist at the Carnival

“The verse must be taken to the limit of expressiveness.” (Mayakovsky, How to Make Verses) It is then that the code opens to the rhyming body to formulate, against the present meaning, another meaning, for years to come, impossible. Julia Kristeva [1] Qu’est ce qui est incontournable (unskirtable!) dans le féminisme quand on écrit?...
Louky Bersianik: Aristotle's Lantern

Louky Bersianik: Aristotle’s Lantern

The Fourth Estate Criticism inhabits the same space as the symbol: both are subject to interpretation, and are thus subjective. There is no more a science of the literary than there is a science of the symbol, even if various theories manage to tease out laws or detect constants. Critical reading, therefore, is...
Danielle Bobker: Belle, A New View of 18th Century Racism

Danielle Bobker: Belle, A New View of 18th Century Racism

Belle: A New View of Eighteenth-Century Racism by Danielle Bobker  Belle (2013), directed by Amma Asante and written by Misan Sagay, tells stories that are by turns deeply familiar and completely fresh. You need only to have read a Jane Austen (1775-1817) novel or two, or seen any of the...
Louise Dupré: Four Sketches for a Morphology

Louise Dupré: Four Sketches for a Morphology

A-Morphs Madonna on television. “Like a Virgin,” she sings in her tiny, mechanical-doll voice. The teen idol of the moment, with exposed belly button and cross hanging from the ear. Bringing together the pornographic with the religious, simultaneously channeling two images that have demonstrated their staying power in Western imagination: the mother (Madonna,...
Louise Cotnoir: Dreams for Human Brains

Louise Cotnoir: Dreams for Human Brains

The Subjecte of Interest [1] To want a woman-subject is to place oneself in a constant state of provocation and aggression: it is to speak of the future because the present literally kills. For those who manage to escape the massacre, the alternative within the patriarchal order is an absolute choice of either prison or...
Latest entries
Aaron Boothby: Container

Aaron Boothby: Container

CONTAINER Talk is a text leaking from my body     Listening I absorb talk leaking from other bodies     Digest some of that     Make some of that part of my body     Most not     Most lost     Talk is a flow Not a flow I fully control     Sometimes very little     Sometimes a torrent of a kind a rush after...

Daniel Zomparelli: In praise of three great first books

Misadventures by Nicholas Grider A Strange Object Press Short Fiction Grider writes a book that is about form, about structure just as much as narrative. He takes characters who wouldn’t normally be able to tell a story but makes the narration work. His stories give you just enough clues to let you settle into the...
Jason Guriel: Reviewing A Unicorn

Jason Guriel: Reviewing A Unicorn

REVIEWING A UNICORN for Michael Lista “Reviewing Chinese Democracy [by Guns N' Roses] is not like reviewing music. It’s more like reviewing a unicorn. Should I primarily be blown away that it exists at all? Am I supposed to compare it to conventional horses?” -Chuck Klosterman The mob that likes to think it likes such things as...
Domenica Martinello: Two Poems

Domenica Martinello: Two Poems

CONTACT ZONES where is this poem going? Toronto what does it teach us? how coincidence reaches into our lives & instructs us  —bpNICHOL, from Continental Trance   1. WHERE ARE ALL THE STRIP CLUBS? The city is full of babyfaced lawyers. Nightly boys working up to chest hair ride the streetcar smooth as rubber. With...
Kate Sterns on Ian McEwan

Kate Sterns on Ian McEwan

The Children Act by Ian McEwan Review by Kate Sterns London. Trinity term one week old. Implacable June weather. This echo of the famous opening to Dickens’ masterpiece, Bleak House serves as the beginning to Ian McEwan’s latest novel, The Children Act. The reference signals, or ought to, that the reader is in for a...
Loie Merritt Now This is Now Happening Now is This Now: An Essay

Loie Merritt Now This is Now Happening Now is This Now: An Essay

Introduction: [Listen] Between the wheels of a subway train and its tracks or off the crags of stones or even the space between your dog’s toes, between a curtain and its stage, or the air vibrating between two bodies, we may hope to find a world apart. Where time envelops space, shadowing it, scrambling it and...
E Martin Nolan on Erina Harris: The Stag Head Spoke

E Martin Nolan on Erina Harris: The Stag Head Spoke

The Stag Head Spoke, Erina Harris. Buckrider Books, 2014 The Stag Head Spoke is a difficult book to grasp – perhaps it is ultimately ungraspable – but even on the first bewildering read, it’s well worth the effort. The visceral power of the words, especially the musical effects, are obvious from the start. The Stag...
Helen Hajnoczky: five poems

Helen Hajnoczky: five poems

Helen Hajnoczky, from Bloom and Martyr   1 If you were mine lash and strawberry. If bound and frail, take charge of me. My caveat, your excavation, tender crumpled my blunder your shoulder my shorn or hollow. If you were mine nectarine and cherish. If you were mine what stings. Tell me brittle, slate and...
Jordan Davis on Ken Babstock

Jordan Davis on Ken Babstock

“The Brave,” a poem in Ken Babstock’s third collection, Airstream Land Yacht, contains a good account of the disdain poets feel for work from outside the tribe: It wasn’t quite right. Lacked focus. Might have tickled the kids, the simple, Or those others on that other coast, but not us. It wasn’t what we liked....
Jake Kennedy on Lisa Robertson

Jake Kennedy on Lisa Robertson

“You Decide to Meditate on the Condition of a Seam”—Notes On Lisa Robertson’s Cinema of the Present it’s not the new.  it is what is yet not known, thought, seen, touched but really what is not. and that is. —Eva Hesse -Kmac visited Coach House just as Cinema Of The Present was being printed and...
Mary Ruefle: 28 Short Lectures

Mary Ruefle: 28 Short Lectures

Here’s Mary Ruefle reading 28 Short Lectures at the Woodberry Poetry Room. She will be reading at Concordia next September. You’ll have to make do with this until then.

Michael Turner: “Encore”, Encore: Attributions, Adverbs and Attitude from James Purdy’s 1957 Short Story

“Encore”, Encore: Attributions, Adverbs and Attitude from James Purdy’s 1957 Short Story Merta told her brother Spence said, wearily attentive she said her brother said she continued, anxiously stepping in front of him to detain his going Spence said, a kind of cold expressionless tone in his voice she repeated, almost without emotion Spence said...
Dan Chiasson: One Poem

Dan Chiasson: One Poem

Interviewing Janet Malcolm To interview the interviewer, you need a mirror. She’s trading privacy for peekaboo. Janet Malcolm writes the questions that she answers. Her apartment had the air of “New York Writer”: The cat, the glass-top table, a park view; On the far wall, facing us, an ornate mirror. Her cat, and not her...
Diego Báez on Paul Vermeersch

Diego Báez on Paul Vermeersch

Paul Vermeersch, Don’t Let It End Like This Tell Them I Said Something, ECW 2014 Like Y2K survivalists and street corner preachers, Paul Vermeersch seems to insist the apocalypse has been upon us for a while, now. However, unlike frightful doomsdayers, Vermeersch revels in this proclamation and, contrary to popular imagination, does not include cerebrophagic...
Jane Malcolm: On Theory, A Sunday

Jane Malcolm: On Theory, A Sunday

Belladonna’s new translation of Theory, A Sunday comes to us just in time to respond to a resurgence of pop feminism—on This is What a Feminist Looks Like t-shirts, at the MTV VMAs, from the mouths of Beyoncé and Lena Dunham, on a “Feminist But Feminine!” sign at the end of a Chanel runway—and to...

Clara Lipfert: On Theory, A Sunday

I think of the ways that I move my body across New York City. I think of the itchiness in my veins that drives me out of the apartment for a walk, amongst light on stone and eyes on me. Find a bench to sit on, read in the sunlight, or watch other bodies move...

ON THE CAREER: Mentoring by Example

On the matter of career — Sina Queyras this post originally appeared on the Poetry Foundation website, March 16, 2010 at 12:15pm Poetry as career is always a contentious subject. My rather lighthearted attempts to open up the discussion this week make it seem as though I have a lighthearted approach, which couldn’t be farther...

ON MENTORSHIP: Natalee Caple

Long Life Mentorship Natalee Caple is the author of seven books of fiction and poetry and a professor of English and Creative Writing at Brock University in St. Catharines. Her latest novel, In Calamity’s Wake, was published by HarperCollins in Canada and Bloomsbury in the US. This article originally appeared in the National Post. Jonathan...

ON MENTORSHIP: John Cage

This comes from derek beaulieu. He notes “i think it’s worth noting that cage didn’t write this piece himself, he adopted it from Sister Corita Kent.”
Kerry-Lee Powell: Four Poems

Kerry-Lee Powell: Four Poems

TO MY CREDITORS A dozen red razors. Eleven peals of manic laughter, ten impending crises. Nine duels at dawn followed by eight candlelight vigils. Seven sighs, six lies, five excellent excuses. Four of my firstborns –three of them bastards– two brinks of despair, one portent of disaster. And O, the moon you asked for.  ...
The Newark Women’s Poetry Club: On Theory, A Sunday

The Newark Women’s Poetry Club: On Theory, A Sunday

For the life of her she can’t imagine how their lives are so different, yet they meet every Sunday in this town called Newark for the poetry club they decided to create. It’s funny how people’s lives have nothing in common, but then you find out you have one thing that ties the two of...
Christian Bök: from "Colony Collapse Disorder"

Christian Bök: from “Colony Collapse Disorder”

Christian Bök is the author of Crystallography (Coach House Press, 1994), a pataphysical encyclopedia nominated for the Gerald Lampert Memorial Award, and of Eunoia (Coach House Books, 2001), a bestselling work of experimental literature, which has gone on to win the Griffin Prize for Poetic Excellence. Bök has created artificial languages for two television shows:...
Reading: Dies: A Sentence

Reading: Dies: A Sentence

A reading of Vanessa Place’s Dies: A Sentence, certainly one of the great literary events of the past decade.
bp Nichol: balloons and abstract rubes

bp Nichol: balloons and abstract rubes

Happy 70th bp. What an amazing spirit walked among us. Click on link below. Click on images to advance slideshow. Enjoy.
Stephen Collis: Report from the Climate March

Stephen Collis: Report from the Climate March

Poetry and the People’s Climate March: A Brief Report Stephen Collis How do we account for the lived quality of life itself, writ large—the vast web of species that are collectively, relationally, alive at any given moment we care to tune into our planetary presence? How do we think this biospheric being alive, and how...

Ryan Fitzpatrick: Three Poems

I JUST WANT TO ESCAPE When the morning starts with a crisis, I turn to my social network. I’m caught in a series of Kodak moments and it makes me feel so lucky. I tear up when colour swells into my recombinating diary. My lungs hurt during the moment of silence. The odds favour me...
Maureen N. McLane: Two Poems

Maureen N. McLane: Two Poems

WHAT’S THE MATTER Why the low mood, the picking at food? Maybe it’s the weather. Maybe it’s hormones. Explanation’s cheap but sometimes hits the mark. I am the target of mysterious arrows I myself let sling. O that’s your fantasy of omnipotence. You make everything your thing. All day I stayed in bed. It seemed...

Felix Bernstein: Breakfast at Tiffany’s; Dinner at Goldsmith’s

Breakfast at Tiffany’s; Dinner at Goldsmith’s: On Daniel’s Canon and Kenneth’s Memes by Felix Bernstein In his article Cheap Signaling, professor Daniel Tiffany argues that there is something new amongst a freshly grouped constellation of poets. That something new (to be brief: culture jamming) is not far from what I have written about in my...
Rebecca Hazelton: Three Poems

Rebecca Hazelton: Three Poems

COVER Halfway through the mission, the operative called his handler and told her the children in the park he could see from the clerestory were flying kites with tails decorated in ribbon and foil. They are putting a real emphasis on aesthetics, he told her. Some of us are born with priorities, and the rest...
Stevie Howell: Two Poems

Stevie Howell: Two Poems

PIQUE Another committee meeting. Of course no one will shit or get off the pot. 7 scientists, 11 politicians, 3 generals, an anthropologist, and a sculptor. No one knows who invited the last. We’re debating a symbol that ought to last 100,000 years. Or whether a symbol ought not to exist at all. We scarfed...
Paul Vermeersch: Rubble

Paul Vermeersch: Rubble

RUBBLE Paul Vermeersch 2 The shark-face is screaming in the doorway opening its fangs. SCREAMING thathat it cannot die, that it has come back, this time on wings, and will spare no earthly thing. It is moving above me, it is burning my heart out. The ancient owls’ nest must have burned. A red fox...

Martin Ainsley: Drohobycz, November 1942

Drohobycz, November 1942  I was happy. My lungs soaked up the blissful spring in the air, the freshness of snow and stars. Before the horse’s breast the rampart of white snowy foam grew higher and higher, and it could hardly wade through that pure fresh mass. At last we stopped. I got out of the...
Jamie Ross: On Theory, A Sunday

Jamie Ross: On Theory, A Sunday

1 The airlock on the huge lilac mead jug glugs away when it’s just me in the sunny third floor kitchen in Montréal’s North End. Way up from the water. The yarrow is flowering and the sumach berries are almost red enough for lemonade. July. I text him back, telling him to meet in the...