A Poetry Congeries, with John Hoppenthaler - December 2010
Americans have a good sense of who the Canadian-born singer-songwriters are. The names Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, Leonard Cohen, Gordon Lightfoot, Alanis Morissette,
Celine Dion, Anne Murray, the McGarrigle sisters and others slip easily off our tongues. Not so with Canadian-born poets. Margaret Atwood seems the default answer to the question “Can you name a Canadian poet?” Michael Ondaatje may get mentioned, as does Anne Carson. Someone may recall that Mark Strand is Canadian-born, and one who enjoys “experimental” poetry may bring up Christian Bök. However, for the most part, American readers and writers of poetry are pretty much in the dark when it comes to the practices of poetry north of the border; therefore, I will make it my business to bring you poems from many Canadian poets in the coming months, and this month’s featuring of Sue Goyette is the first installment of this project. I think that you’ll find her work as engaging as I do.