08 April 2008

Why Are You So Sad? David McFadden shortlisted for the 2008 Griffin!

My car got broken into last night. The fuckers smashed a window to do it. They got about $2.37 cash. And they took my backpack. When they get home, they'll find they now own about 30 poetry books, plus first drafts of half a dozen of my poems.

For this, and for far more profound reasons, it's been a sad season for me.

A ray of good news this morning: David W. McFadden was shortlisted for the 2008 Griffin Poetry Prize, for Why Are You So Sad? Selected Poems of David W. McFadden, edited and introduced by me, and published in 2007 by Insomniac Press. The project was Paul Vermeersch's idea, and he and publisher Mike O'Connor gave us a lotta leeway in putting together a huge selection.

Gary Barwin, David W. McFadden & Stuart Ross at the spring 2007 Insomniac Press launch.

I'd been disappointed that the book had been reviewed only once so far, by rob mclennan, on his blog and then in Rampike. It drives me nuts that some of the poetry pups get huge amounts of publicity, but guys from Dave's generation are often barely noticed. And I do believe that David McFadden is Canada's best poet.

Well, the shortlist for the Canadian prize is Dave, plus Nicole Brossard (for Notebook of Roses and Civilization, trans. by Moure and Majzels), and Robin Blaser, for his Selected. That's a pretty respectable list, all right.

The American list is really impressive too: John Ashbery for his recent Selected, Elaine Equi for hers, as well as C├ęsar Vallejo's Complete (translated by Clayton Eshleman), and David Harsent's Selected.

Now, go out and buy Dave's book, if you haven't yet. It provides more pure pleasure than anything else in Canuck poetry.

David W. McFadden with Insomniac poetry editor Paul Vermeersch

Talk soon.


At April 08, 2008 9:46 pm , Blogger John MacDonald said...

this post is why i read your blog.

At April 08, 2008 11:04 pm , Blogger Linda Crosfield said...

This is SO exciting, Stu, and am I ever glad you're back.

At April 19, 2008 7:42 pm , Blogger Weldon Gardner Hunter said...

Is it just me, or does David McFadden (who I also think is Canada's best poet) look a little like Oscar from Corner Gas?

At April 21, 2008 7:47 pm , Blogger Rolli said...

Too bad about the break-in - esp. the loss of manuscripts and books. You either have one disappointed thief on your hands, or else some cultured smash-and-grabber whose lust for literature drives him to extreme acts of desperation.

But yeah, that would really suck.


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