Lisa Pasold

PARIS NEXT STOP

Exciting news! The television show PARIS NEXT STOP which I worked on all this past winter & spring is now being broadcast on Discovery...check your schedule if you have cable! I so enjoyed hosting this show.

The Next Big Thing: What I'm working on

Talking about my work-in-progress terrifies me. But it is probably a good habit to confront such things before breakfast... and two writers I respect & love, Lauren B. Davis and Jennifer K. Dick, both tagged me with this—many thanks, you two. Now I owe ya. So...this is a questionnaire which has been circulating through writerly websites: ‘the questions are the same for everyone. The answers, they are not.”

The end of the world with Victor Hugo

I went to see LES MISERABLES. Yes, I know the movie has some historical 'foibles' but I love its creative choices. I think Victor Hugo might even approve of his novel's transition through musical theatre into film--he enjoyed using melodrama for effect.

When the June 1832 uprising began, Hugo was apparently in the Tuileries Garden. He heard gunfire coming from Les Halles. A firm supporter of revolutionary ideals--and no doubt curious to see news events first-hand--Hugo left the Jardins. It's possible to retrace part of his route...

Governor General's Award nomination

i am incredibly honoured that my book, Any Bright Horse, is one of this year's nominees for the Governor General's Literary Award in Poetry

The Governor General is Queen Elizabeth II's representative in Canada; the award dates back to 1937 and winners include Margaret Atwood, Mordecai Richler, and Leonard Cohen. Needless to say, I'm pretty darn thrilled to be nominated.

Happy birthday, Mister Faulkner!

Faulkner's birthday in the Crescent City: real mint juleps in traditional silver cups, a perfect sunset, and Napoleon's deathmask in the next room

(Of course, nothing in New Orleans is entirely what it seems, and this mask might actually be the face of Bony's friend who sometimes pretended to be the fallen emperor. It is accompanied by the emperor's handkerchief. which is somehow so much sadder, so fragile and starched and old, more tragically human than the overlarge paperweight of the deathmask.)

 

William Faulkner lived in this city for barely 16 months, but his relationship with the place was as formative as Hemingway's with Paris. He invented himself various times over--and routinely stole other people's stories to make his own life more interesting. And it was here that he really became a writer. He was often quiet, often dishonest, and often disreputable. Anita Loos (author of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, and one of my personal heroines) was introduced to him with the warning 'don't expect much of Bill, he has a silver plate in his head, you know.' 

 

Faulkner did not have a plate in his head--this was just one of his many invented personas. He did drink rather a lot. And apparently his favourite cocktail was a mint julep. So that is what we raise in toast to his fabulous convoluted sentences and tremendous story-telling.

any bright horse - 1st review

"The narrator meditates on the ebb and flow of motion and stillness, and the disorientation involved in returning home... Pasold acknowledges Don McKay and Daphne Marlatt as influences: both have an affinity for nature imagery and graceful ease in poetically conveying human experiences. Pasold carries on their traditions with distinction, craft and beauty."

- Quill & Quire review for ANY BRIGHT HORSE

 

 

when the new book gets reviewed, it is stressful.

 

when the new book gets reviewed by Quill & Quire in the July/August issue, it is even more stressful.

 

when the new book gets reviewed by Quill & Quire in their July/August issue and I am out of the country & can't get a copy, it is even more super-extra-stressful.

 

but the review is good! break out the champagne! the review is really great. i should probably send critic Shannon Webb-Campbell a glass of Veuve-Clicquot, but i don't know her. she might not like champagne.

 

(the whole review is here )

 

 AND... happy Bastille Day!

The Goldmine

Ottawa poet/editor/publisher rob mclennan hit New Orleans to read with his lady Christine McNair and with Stephen Brockwell at the atmospheric Goldmine. Of course, it is New Orleans, so most venues are pretty damn atmospheric...but the Goldmine is the home of 17 Poets! hosted by Dave Brinks & Megan Burns--for a perfect description of the recent Canuck-invasion soiree, see rob's blog here.

 

The Goldmine always makes me think of Dawson City, because really the place could only exist here in New Orleans or in Dawson. There's a fissure in the floor that runs down past the performance/reading area, a fissure that surely leads to a gold seam deep in the swampland of Crescent City. And whenever any poet reads a poem about death (and poets, well, they often read poems about death)--whenever that happens, one of the old pinball or video machines in the front part of the bar gurgles and bings to itself, in a secret game-thought about obsolescence and poetic survival.

Big Bridge 15th anniversary issue

The latest issue of Big Bridge is now online & I'm thrilled to be included alongside Paris-based poets like Alice Notley & Jennifer K. Dick. Check out my work (excerpted from any bright horsehere

ANY BRIGHT HORSE debuts in Calgary

My first reading from the new book! I was at the April 2012 Calgary Spoken Word Festival (founded by kick-ass poet & performer Sheri-D Wilson). 

Back in New Orleans

thunderstorms across a city that smells of jasmine flowers, crawfish, mules & mud. living on Bourbon Street (no lie), and reading Vincent A. Cellucci's AN EASY PLACE / TO DIE. because this city rings, an old cracked bell/belle:

 

“This book is a journey through the bookended history of poetry localized in the most magical place in America. The poems are eager to turn you on to death. Not erotically. Nor religiously. Nor philosophically. Simply. May they ease you as they ease me. We are all death’s children and we’ve yet to stop squirming but poetry is our grandmothers’ whiskey dipped pacifier. Poems are also words living on a page. Simple moments when the world rings instead of your cell.” - Cellucci

 

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