Thurs, June 29th, 6pm – 7pm | The ARTS Project, main gallery | 203 Dundas Street, London
Catriona Wright is a writer, editor, and teacher living in Toronto. Her poems have appeared in PRISM International, Prairie Fire, Rusty Toque, Lemon Hound, and Best Canadian Poetry 2015. She is the poetry editor at The Puritan and a co-founder of Desert Pets Press, a chapbook press. Her debut collection, Table Manners, is out this spring with Véhicule Press.
Carnal, flamboyant, visceral, and bold, Table Manners is a rich meal. Wright’s debut introduces us to the image of the poet as “gastronaut,” a figure who seems to live entirely between table and stove and who steeps her surroundings and relationships in complex emotional flavours. “My life,” she writes, “is now tuned to bone marrow donuts and chef gossip. I’m useless at any other frequency.” Wright’s wild narratives are sometimes funny, sometimes frightening, and always ravishingly observed. Table Manners is what might have emerged had Julia Child written like Sharon Olds, or if Anthony Bourdain knew his way around a line break.
Erica McKeen is a storyteller, poet, and student living in London. She is a prose reader for Persephone’s Daughters, a literary journal focused on the abuse of women and healing through art. She is also an occasional writer for The Mighty, where she strings together articles on mental illness that she hopes will help someone, somewhere. In 2015, she won third in the Occasus Prize, and in 2016, her short story “Our Eyes, Our Tongue” won the Lillian Kroll Prize. Her work has appeared in Occasus Literary Journal, Minola Review, Shirley Magazine, The Quilliad, and elsewhere.
McKeen’s writing always bends toward the bizarre and horrific: she is enthralled with the topics of madness, psychological fear, isolation, and the mistreatment of women in literature.