Pearl Pirie and Kunundrum at the Muses Reading Series

The Muses Reading Series, June 25, 2012Monday, June 25, 2012, 7–9 pm
The Elmdale House Tavern
1084 Wellington Street West, Ottawa  Map »

Poetry by Pearl Pirie
Music by the percussion group Kunundrum

$8 / pay what you can
Benefit for the Peace and Environment News.

Brought to you by The Muses Reading Series.
For more information contact Mike Buckthought at helios –at–

Featured readers and musicians:

Pearl Pirie. Photo by Brian Pirie.Pearl Pirie’s poetry has appeared in more places than she has. She has two collections and edits phafours press which most recently published in air/air out: 21 poets for the Guatemala Stove Project. She is the author of been shed bore (Chaudiere Books, 2010), and her manuscript Thirsts won the 2011 Robert Kroetsch Award for Innovative Poetry. Her poetry appears in numerous publications including Arc, Bywords and Ottawater.

Kunundrum. Photo by Barry Thoms.Kunundrum is a percussion group based in Ottawa.
Not to be missed! Kunundrum will get you dancing to the rhythms and songs of West Africa, Cuba and Haiti.

Photos by Brian Pirie and Barry Thoms.

Caesura for the New Caesar

(in the manner of Res Gestae, by Augustus)

by Mike Buckthought

These noble deeds of deified Stephanus are recorded
on two bronze pillars set up in Rome.

Thus may it be recorded how I, Stephanus Arpinus Ottavian,
came to be imperator of the empire.

At age nineteen and by my own decision, I came to study
economics. I proceeded on the path to duty and deity
in the service of all Albertans.

I waged many battles against internal and eternal foes.
I was acclaimed imperator, the dictatorship granted to
me, I held the consulship in perpetuity.

I elected the members of the Senate. The Senate duly
decreed that rituals were to be undertaken by consuls,
and political games were celebrated.

I presented spectacles of athletes summoned from every land.
This was a time of epic skiing in Whistler, of heated debates
before melted mountains.

Following no truce, enemies were vanquished on the
frontiers of empire, ragged Parthians and Germanic tribes,
barbarian invaders all.

By decree of the Senate, my name graced the national
anthem, my portrait was hung in every portal. The senators
decreed that I should hold tribunician power as long as I live.

May the streets be silenced, the voices in the Forum
reduced to a whisper in worship
before my name.

The Senate consecrated the altar of Fortuna Alberta
before the Exxon Gate, for Albertan oil
is worth all.

I marked my sixth and seventh consulships
by extinquishing all civil discord, and controlled
all affairs by universal consent.

After the passage of time, I surpassed the passage of all
legislation, I excelled all
in all authority.

As I write this, I am in my seventy-sixth year,
I, Stephanus Arpinus Ottavian.

Published in Rogue Stimulus: The Stephen Harper Holiday Anthology for a Prorogued Parliament (Mansfield Press, 2010).

learning to love Bytown

learning to love Bytown

by Mike Buckthought

because of skating on the canal,
because the canal is surrounded
by parks

because snow is better than rain
because rain thaws much of my town
in the spring

because spring is followed
by summer, and summer brings
bicycling by the canal

because by and by, it becomes
less boring.

Published in The Delicate Art of Paper Passing, March 2006.

une poésie concrète

une poésie concrète

by Mike Buckthought

four wooden pegs, a length of string
and freshly poured concrete

a rectangular prison removed from
the world, but still in its embrace.

poetry emerges as the iambic
pounding of construction crews

slipping across a desolate landscape,
surveying the wreckage of the

suburban dream. from concrete boxes
to apartment blocks, a cold metallic

sheen. cars as corpuscles, creeping
through the smog and tangled arteries.

Published in The Delicate Art of Paper Passing, March 2006.