Monday, February 21, 2011

The Books of Spring: Open Air Bindery

Two and a half hours of shoveling snow gets a man thinking about Spring, which means, for us a new crop of fabulous books. The first of these, set to hit the presses this week, is David Hickey's second collection of poetry, Open Air Bindery.

This is David's second collection with us, following 2006's Gerald Lampert nominated In the Lights of a Midnight Plow. Bindery builds upon the myriad strengths of Plow to offer a tightly fantastic collection of songs, stories and covenants ranging across everything from art and astronomy to snowflakes and suburbia, each poem a small instance of colliding light, playful and humorous and profound. These poems, like the flakes in David's poem-sequence Snowflake Photography. take their "time / Covering the roadside trees in forms of (their) careful willing ... gesturing down to earth, unveiling new shapes / for all that (they) find/ here in the oldest of botanies."

David will be touring in March and April in support of Bindery, including the following:

March 21st: McNally Robinson, Winnipeg, MB for World Poetry Day
April 4th: TBD, Windsor, Ont. (With Joshua Trotter and Zach Wells)
April 5th: London Central Public Library, London, Ont. (With Joshua Trotter and Zach Wells)
April 6th: Dora Keogh, Toronto, Ont. (With Joshua Trotter and Zach Wells)
April 16th: Cobourg Poetry Festival, Cobourg, Ont.
April 27th: TBA, Kingston, Ont. (with Sarah Tsiang)

From Bindery, here's the poem (which may shed a bit of light on the title and cover image) X-ray. (This poem, incidentally, will be the next CNQ collectible broadside, due to hit mailboxes in early March.)


So this is where I’ve hidden
my ghost, shadow of all

my firsts, essential self
shuttered down to its most

basic pajamas:
I’ve been looking for you,

ornithological bouquet
blooming in the dark

room of my days,
I’ve been walking around

in negative,
I’ve been wondering

how I fit, moony
white, in the wetsuit of my body —

so it’s good
to greet you at last,

and to see

there’s nothing wrong

with me, nothing

broken, nothing missing

but the wings

of a book

in my hand, nothing

but a little


left on inside me.

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