Monday, November 2, 2009

Sites of Resistance - filmed in Fabulous Poeti-Scope!

Just when you thought it was safe to go onto YouTube and not see the latest and greatest video by yours truly, Leopold McGinnis, poet, author and wearer of neato eyeglasses...IT IS NO LONGER SAFE TO GO ONTO YOUTUBE AND NOT SEE THE LATEST AND GREATEST VIDEO BY YOURS TRULY, LEOPOLD MCGINNIS, POET, AUTHOR AND WEARER OF NEATO EYEGLASSES!

You've been warned.

*Filmed in fabulous Poeti-scope*

Sites of Resistance (from my poetry book, Poetaster)

In my kitchen
A spoon in the fork drawer
Mismatched chopsticks
A knife operated toaster

In the living room
A painting by nobody important
askew by 2 degrees
Books arranged with complete disregard
for the dewy decimal system
Or any system for that matter

In the bedroom
A drawer full of dead batteries
and elastic bands
Coins in jars taken out of circulation
and stored under the bed frame

In the bathroom
Mold that creeps into the tiles
A clogged drain
A toilet paper roll too far
from the toilet seat

These are sites of resistance.

I can beat-budda-beat my feet
on the pavement one thousand times a day
and make nary a crack
nary a scratch.
I can scream at the top of my lungs
Uptown! Downtown! Crosstown!
and reach nary an ear

But these are my sites of resistance
They may be small
But together we will fight
The Tyranny of Order!
The Hegemony of Structure!
The Fascism of Eternity!
In the kitchen!
In the bedroom!
In the bathroom!
In the living room!
These are sites of resistance.

Monday, October 12, 2009

New Video!!!!

Just in time for Halloween!

Yes, it's been over a year since my last video...but it's always been my goal to another one done. This one looks particularly great. The text is below the video. Enjoy!

Put a flower in your hair
so I can see you at night
as you creep through the graveyard
re-animating the dicks
of the dearly deceased.

Trapped deep in the ground.
they are pushing up more than just daisies
when your black black soul passes by.
If only they could speak!
If only they could sneak a peak
through the dirt
beneath your polka-dotted skirt…
if only they could feel more
than the touch
of your black stilettoed heel
thudding in the overworld
If only they could comfort themselves with more
than the clip-clop clip-clop clip-clop
of you fading away
the sound haunting their memory so long
they’d swear it was their heartbeat
starting up again.

Mama always said to stay out
of dark places
but that’s where you shine
baby doll
Even your dark dark hair
is washed out
in the bleach of that awful awful sun
but at night
let the wolves howl for you
the moon leads the way
to tonight’s show
don’t ever let them tell you no
life lives where the living don’t go
so please
put a flower in your hair
for me
when you pass by my grave.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Zues and the Giant Iced Tea submitted!!

So I bit the bullet and submitted my manuscript to the press yesterday afternoon with fingers crossed. Here are some wacky stats on the manuscript:

Title: Zues and the Giant Iced Tea
Length: 129 pages (but that's with lots of page breaks - they are poems, after all)
# of poems in the collection: 48
Longest Narrative: The Sultan Poems
Most Controversial poem: A Brief History of Gandhi
# of poems about luchadores: 1
# of poems about arms dealing: 2
# of poems about Mexicans: 3
# of poems about robots: 3
# of poems with an Asian or Middle Eastern flavour: 27

The Artist Worries about the Quality of his work!

As a perfectionist, this was difficult because I felt I could still review, tighten and improve some of the work included, particularly the Sultan Poems, which started off as 3 poems and I hoped to merge into a complete 'story' of about 6 poems. When I submitted it it was 19 poems!! Yikes. Ideally I could put them aside for a month and then come back to do some final tightening up...but at some point you just have to submit, and I was months behind. If they like the manuscript, I'll get the chance to tighten those up at that point.

The Artist worries his manuscript will be a Comedy at the Oscars!

As a worrier, I'm not entirely sure, at the end of this very long journey, that I have put together a manuscript that is right for the poetry series the press is creating. That's probably just me worrying. I really like the concept of the collection - they are narrative poems and I'm very pleased with the quality of all of them. But as such, they are much less personal than those in my last collection and, as most critics and reviewers are want to do, could be considered 'lighter, less serious fare' (although I think that's unjust.) I think I also consciously stayed away from the darker stuff this time around, because I have more range than that and wanted to explore these narrative type works. However, the ultra personal, dark poetry of Poetaster is what made them ask me to submit something. So, essentially, I worry that this is going to be like submitting a comedy for an oscar nod. It could be the most brilliant film ever made...but if it's funny then it doesn't deserve any awards. On the other hand, comedy's are watched by way more people.

The Artist posts a poem from the collection in celebration of its completion!

The Two Xs

Dos Equis
The two exxes
The dirtiest man
South of Al Hambra
And North of it too

He was born
in the desert dust.
No woman’s son
He was foreign to the ways of women
No man’s son
He was lost amongst his brothers

They called him Dos Equis
The two exxes
Nobody ever saw his eyes
under the wide brim of his black hat
His skin was cold to the touch
beneath his black vest
and jeans
and snake black boots

Dos Equis
He was given a life
without direction
without answers
When he signed his name
he signed an X.


He was given a life
without direction
without answers
He was only given
Two Exxes.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Listen to THIS!

In conversation with a friend the other day, it was asked why I didn't make audio recordings of my poetry, as she preferred and 'got more out of' my poetry when it was spoken. And so I told her "I do!" and "I have!"

That said, I haven't done a new audio recording in quite some time (partly because the mp3 player I was using to make them was stolen, and partly because I got more into the video poetry), however, her comments encouraged me to, at least, pull out the ones I'd previously created and post them here, if not do some more in the not too distant future.

Anyway, for the time being, here are two mp3s of me reading my poetry that used to be on my old site, for your listening enjoyment. (Both these poems are found in Poetaster)

Friday, September 25, 2009

A Party in my Tummy

This has nothing to do with my writing. I just thought this was an awesome video!

And if you're really feeling masochistic, check out the 'launch party' vid for Windows 7!

Monday, September 21, 2009

More videos coming soon

I hope to get not one, but TWO videos out for October. That should make up for the 1+ year of nothing. I'm pretty excited. One will be halloween/psychobilly styled, and the other a poem that I included in Poetaster - one of my oldest poems, actually.

I already filmed the footage for the second poem tonight. All I need is time to edit it, so you may see it sooner than later.

Friday, September 18, 2009

My publisher loses Federal Grant funding!

Ack! That totally sucks. The publisher of my last book, Ekstasis Editions (in fact, the ONLY publisher that's seen enough value in my work to publish an entire collection of my poetry), has, for specious reasons (apparently, the 'quality of authors they publish has dimished' over the last year - that hurts!), been denied ANY funding for the 2009-2010 year. As you can imagine, for a small Canadian publisher of poetry, that's practically a kiss of death!

Anyway, I'll have more on this later, but in the meantime, if you'd like support a (suddenly!) struggling press, please have a look over their catalogue (a good time to pick up a copy of my latest, if you've been planning on it) and consider buying something (get Christmas shopping for your favourite indie book reader done early this year!) - I'm sure they'd appreciate it at this time.

I'll write in more detail when I get a chance.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

What am I working on these days?

A friend of mine reminded me that, on my old site, I had a little box that listed projects I was currently working on, and asked if those had changed at all. Yes and no. I'm always working on multiple projects - some rise to the fore, some fall to the back. Some get completed, some get dropped, some never get out of the state of being worked on. Here are the ones that are receiving top attention lately:

1) Zues and the Giant Iced Tea: A new collection of Poetry, tentatively titled, for a local press. They've only asked me to submit something, so no promise of publication at this point, but I'm 97% done the manuscript and I'm pretty damned excited about it. It's a collection of narrative poems (ie, poems that tell a story, either individually or collectively) and, in a lot of ways, is a more mature collection than Poetaster

2) Newborn - my graphic novel. I haven't been able to work on this in almost 2 years, due to the craziness of my life. But in the last few months I've managed to get back on the wagon and am having a blast with it. I'm about 22 pages in right now...will probably be a couple hundred pages long at least. It's slow going, due to my work life, but I'm hoping to start revealings parts of it here as I proceed. Keep posted!

3) The Last Days of Naomichi Onada: I'm hoping to have time to finish my first final draft of The Last Days of Naomichi Onada, a full length narrative poem about a Japanese soldier stuck on an island in the Atlantic, who still thinks WW2 is going on, based on a poem I included in Poetaster, The Lost Orders of Onoda Hirou, based on a real story. For quite some time this has been my anticipated 'next publication', but invitations to put together poetry collections for publication keep trumping it. An embarrassment of riches, really, but this project edges closer to completion.

4) Other stuff. Other high priority projects that I'd like to, but aren't necessarily being worked on right now include another couple collections of poetry, a full length novel, and my father's novel, which is quite good, but just needs to be put into a final draft.

So...that's what's going on right now*.

*valid until September 2, 2009

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Wednesday, August 19, 2009 is dead!

I've officially decommissioned it. It will still be up for a while until I can figure out how to get the domain name to redirect to the new site, but in the meantime you can see it here:

Any idiot can have a blog...and I do!

Welcome to my new blog! I am currently revamping my website. It may just be this blog, or it may be more. I'm hoping to make it more inclusive of the amount and type of work that I do, easier to manage (thus easier to update) and more fun to do. Always full of lofty ambitions. We'll see if I deliver.