Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Barbara Gowdy in the house

Novelist Barbara Gowdy certainly isn't known for writing "domestic" dramas, but you can hear the kitchen sink in her reading for AuthorsAloud. Well, that's not entirely accurate. It's closer to say you can hear the kitchen tiles in their echo, and the dogs in the background, and, at a certain point, the hum of a nearby refrigerator. Barbara graciously invited us into her home a few days ago to record a reading for AuthorsAloud from her newest novel, Helpless. And she handled the various distractions and challenges of a home recording session with the élan and humor of a seasoned pro.

It's an exquisite reading, from a wonderful novel. Go to it now, hang out in Barbara's kitchen, and eat it up.

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

A plethora of poetry

If the written arts are sisters, poetry is the beautiful, mysterious and intimidating one standing at the window. Hard to know whether to approach her — she's damn sexy, but that could be a knife in her hand. Still, you want more of those mysterious sisters around; they make life far more interesting. So I'm happy to say that in the last couple of weeks, AuthorsAloud has increased its array of poetry substantially.

Whether they're brief or long, wry or wrenching, each of Ron Charach's poems seem rich with humanity, a caring for the human condition. And if you're a writer, you'll appreciate the final, sardonic poem among Ron's offering — "The Review that Kills." As well, one of the busiest and lowercasiest poets around, ron mclennan, has taken a moment away from running things in Ottawa to provide a reading of poems that embrace that city like few have before him. (Thanks to Susan Johnston CKCU-FM for the recording). And most recently, with a reading from his latest collection, Harry Thurston takes us to the Dakhleh oasis in the Western Desert with a voice that resonates with thousands of miles of hard and glorious travel.

There are readings by many more poets coming, and also a treat in a very few days, a reading by (speaking of beautiful and mysterious) ... Barbara Gowdy.
So keep coming back.