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Meredith Quartermain's Vancouver Walking won the BC Book Award for Poetry in 2006, and Nightmarker was a finalist for the 2009 Vancouver Book Award. Matter, which came out in 2008, has been described as "prescient, daring." And Recipes from the Red Planet was longlisted for a 2011 ReLit Award in Short Fiction and was a finalist for the 2011 BC Book Award for Fiction. Her work has appeared in magazines across Canada including The Walrus, Canadian Literature, the Literary Review of Canada, Matrix, The Capilano Review, West Coast Line, filling Station, Prism International, and other magazines. She taught English Literature and Composition at UBC and Capilano College, and has enjoyed leading workshops at the Naropa Summer Writing Program, the Kootenay School of Writing and the Toronto New School of Writing. In 2002, she and husband Peter Quartermain founded Nomados Literary Publishers, through which they've published more than 35 books of innovative writing.
Meredith Quartermain was the 2012 Writer in Residence at the Vancouver Public Library
Rupert's Land: a novel is forthcoming from NeWest Press, fall 2013.
From readers of Recipes from the Red Planet:
"These stories simply delighted me. Their broken turns of logic and semantics are lovely and reflect, somehow, the way I think. To read and reread." Erín Moure, Attention Span (Third Factory)
"Both literary grazers and devoted followers of this fearlessly droll explorer will unearth much to admire in her daring (though never daunting) out-of-this-world feast. Satisfaction guaranteed." Judith Fitzgerald, Globe & Mail.
Camille Martin's review
rob mclennan's review
On the back cover
Near the end of these wry and witty pages we are told of someone from Ontario, and the same page asks, Where is Ontario from? The same could be asked of the Red Planet, or Quartermain’s ingredients: her lists, her seemingly endless strings of relations made tastier by the weight of form, be they tales, news reports, voice imitations. Metaphysics, local history, classics, astronomy – the reference range is vast, but so is the contemporary experience. A rising crust!
Recipes from the Red Planet cooks books for deep space dining, rolls out the dough of language and shapes it into buttery crescents that are supernaturally textured and interactive with daily life. Meredith Quartermain’s solar system blows asteroid dust through the patriarchy and oven roasts the alphabet to a lovely golden crisp. Whipped by interplanetary winds we meet the immortals of the ancient world inverted and propelled into negative space. Their ground delineates our figures, neatly attired in dresses we’ve sewn ourselves from Simplicity patterns. Here are the recipes that will free Rapunzel from her tower. Here are all the blue radishes you can eat.
Praise for Nightmarker and Matter
Dalhousie Review: Eco-poetic works, in their move towards an abandonment of the self, reach sites of experimentation that are among the most radical in recent poetry. Perhaps the two most noteworthy titles in this respect are those published by Meredith Quartermain in 2008. . . . The poems of Matter are prescient, daring, and push readers to unthink the things that they think even as they read. Similarly, the prose poems of Quartermain's Nightmarker explore humankind as, itself, a sprawling city of impulses. . . . Quartermain's experiments in undoing the knot of human understanding force us to ask questions like "what could Canada mean to Pangaea?" . . . undercutting our sense of ourselves as animals imbued with anything to set us apart from the remainder of infinity. Kit Dobson
Canadian Literature on Nightmarker: click here for review
Praise for Matter
Toronto Star: In one poem, she refers to "a quaggy wild / around Man's island of sense." That "quaggy wild" is exactly where this inventive poet sets up shop, blurring the division between animate and inanimate, and fabricating her own brand of metaphysics for understanding how the world works. Barbara Carey
Praise for Vancouver Walking:
Globe & Mail: Packing a centuries-wise arsenal of research, Quartermain's poetic tour . . . reads the downtown's every street sign and historical plaque to invoke not vagaries of weather or a sensitive narrator's emotional landscape, but the lived epic of how specific native soil became appropriated to a condition of contemporary real estate. Margaret Christakos
Monday Magazine: With Vancouver Walking, Meredith Quartermain enters the esteemed literary company of George Bowering, Daphne Marlatt, Frank Davey, Jeff Derksen and others who have written the multitudinous city, exploring Vancouver as a moving target for poetry. . . . Under Quartermain's gaze, even the most local Vancouver story becomes a link to the greater world, transforming the city into a cosmopolis made of the mad whirls of history, in constant motion with the fates of its living (and long dead) millions. Marc Christensen
"Meredith Quartermain’s Radical Acts: An Interview with Kim Minkus" (2012) The Capilano Review Blog
Interview with Rob Mclennan (2008): 12 or 20 Questions
Interview by Aaron Peck (2003)
Recipes from the Red Planet (BookThug 2010) finalist for 2011 BC Book Award for Fiction
Nightmarker (NeWest 2008) finalist for the 2009 Vancouver Book Award
Matter (BookThug 2008)
Vancouver Walking (NeWest 2005) Winner 2006 BC Book Award for Poetry
“Walking cinemas, civic memory tours, these poems are sites for the eruption of public history chronically denied but there as trace in the very names that mark our streets. Meredith Quartermain's observant eye tracks what underlies or surrounds our daily routine, she sees what routine blinds us to, and in the process constructs some wonderfully trenchant slices of contemporary city life.” —Daphne Marlatt
“In Vancouver Walking Meredith Quartermain sights the coordinates of tangible and historical attentions as she moves through an amazement of place and language. The word here is foot and eye, step by step, crisscrossing the city with the grids and layers of its own minute particulars and articulating the truth of the imagination, the dynamics of the intersect. These poems listen carefully to the yearning of place, the kind of naming a city answers to.” —Fred Wah
Click here to read "Frances Street"
Chapbooks & Broadsides
Highway 99 (Stanzas 35; Above Ground 2003)
The Eye-Shift of Surface (Greenboathouse Books 2003) rob mclennan's Review
A Thousand Mornings (Nomados 2002)
Meredith Quartermain has really struck gold with A Thousand Mornings, a serious-playful and engaging work in which she weighs and sounds what presents itself outside a real window, inside language, and through verbal-emotional associations. Written in pointillist phrases, diaristic, notational, associative, punning, funning and just following any track, the work sits down to itself: to the world, and to the self in time. It considers all the little bits and details of domestic life and the thinking these can engender. "Looking out of the window of my room is a window looking out my head." This work creates an osmotic border between seeing and writing, a realist hypnogogic passage between memory and today, between outside and inside, between now and then. That anywhere is everywhere is proven once again with this brave, enchanting book. Rachel Blau DuPlessis
[with Robin Blaser] Wanders (Nomados 2002) Ron Silliman's Review
An amazing, even jaw dropping performance . . . . her poems absolutely stand up to the challenge of Blaser's own . . . . The sum of it is totally exhilarating. . . . Ron Silliman
Inland Passage (housepress 2001)
Spatial Relations (Diaeresis 2001)
Veers (Backwoods Broadsides 1998)
Abstract Relations (Keefer Street 1998)
Terms of Sale (Meow 1996)
Magazines & Anthologies
Poems by Meredith Quartermain in Canadian Literature ("Big News Café," "For Robin Blaser," "New Albion") See Canadian Literature Poets Online.
"Matter 25," "Matter 26," "Discovery at Sea 21" and "Sun" Force Field: 77 Women Poets of British Columbia, forthcoming spring 2013.
"Bù" and "Hăi" The Capilano Review 3.19 (2013): 64-65.
"If I Bartleby," "A Natural History of the Throught," "Out of the dark," and "How to converse" Prism 50:4 (Summer 2012): 45-48
"Silence" One More Once: for Pierre Coupey's 70th (North Vancouver: Cue Books, 2012): 84-86
"Buddies" West Coast Line 72 (Winter 2012): 78-83
"One cannot" Eleven Eleven 11 (2011) 247 [San Francisco]
"Four Microfictions" Golden Handcuffs Review 1.14 (2011): 43-47.
"The Not of What She Didn't Know" [10 pieces from Recipes from the Red Planet]. The Capilano Review 3.12 (2010): 49-58.
"from Rupert's Land [a novel]" West Coast Line 65 (2010): 4-9.
"Becoming a Waitress," "Sewing," "Tangled Relations," "Gadzooks," Event Magazine 39.1 (2010): 54-57
"He imagined a seawall," Matrix 84 (fall 2009): 19
“Canada,” “The Plackener,” “Directors Change Directions,” and “Heat Haze” Dandelion 34.2 (2009): 84-87
“Cathedral” and “Scaffolding,” A Verse Map of Vancouver, ed. George McWhirter. Vancouver: Anvil, 2009: 92 and 104
“Clouds,” “Wind,” “Frost” and “Sun” Windsor Review 42.1 [Windsor] (Spring 2009): 16-19
“Delicacy” and “Victory Square” to topoz Poetry International [Poverty and Poetry] (Fall 2008): 74, 75.
"Future Past," Rocksalt: An Anthology of Contemporary B.C. Poetry.
Ed. Mona Fertig & Harold Rhenisch (Mother Tongue 2008)
"The Wife of Gassy Jack" and "On my way to the overpass" West Coast Line [Roy Miki issue] (Spring 2008)
"Six Microfictions" Golden Handcuffs Review 1.10 (Summer-Fall 2008)
"Song of the Dodo," The Capilano Review 3.4 (Winter 2008)
"Bird City," The Walrus (Jan/Feb 2008)
"Banking," "Rain," "Islands," and "My Library," Windsor Review 40.2 (Fall 2007)
"Apprehensions," West Coast Line 54 (2007) [10 poems accompanying 10 photo/drawings by Rhoda Rosenfeld]
"Matter 15: Water and air words evaporate" in Philip Coleman, ed. On Literature and Science (Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2007)
"Queen Dreams," "Scaffolding," "Her Majesty Versus Murdock," and "Hacky Sack," The Capilano Review 3.1&2 (2007)
"Brain Coral," "Omnibus," "Defiance" and "A Piece of Cake," Event Magazine 35.2 (2006)
"Oliver Chronicle," CV2 28.4 (Spring 2006) rpt
"Proclamation," "Baptizing Mars," "Fireground," and "Homer Street," Golden Handcuffs Review 1.7 (2006)
"Matter 4: Organic in-organs," "Matter 6: The Hard Seed-halves of Softness," "Matter 9: To texture to verb," and "Matter 10: A World-thing, a State of Powder" Green Integer Review 2 (2006)
"Walk to commercial drive," West Coast Line 47: Unfinished Business: Photographing Vancouver Streets 1955 to 1985 (2005)
"Asphyxiation" and "A Theory of Fire," Doppelganger Magazine (2005)
"Cartographer at Work" and "Macdonald Bus," Stylus Poetry Journal (2005)
"Matter 2: World" and "Matter 8: A Glass House of Scaffolding," Moosehead Anthology 10: Future Welcome (2005)
"Oliver Chronicle," 71(+) for GB: an Anthology for George Bowering (2005)
"Pacific Northwest," Literary Review of Canada (April 2005)
"A Coronal for L.N." Court Green 2 (2005)
Five pieces from Northwest Passage, Windsor Review 37.2 (Fall 2004)
"Record," filling Station 32 (2004)
Four pieces from A Thousand Mornings, P-Queue 1 (2004)
Seven Poems, Bongos of the Lord 17 (Spring 2004)
"For Robin Blaser," Canadian Literature 180 (Spring 2004)
"Geography," Cranky 2 (Spring 2004)
"First Night," Prism International (Fall 2003)
“Tulip Glass, for Ric Caddel” Jacket 22 (2003)
"The Singe of Language" and "I and Me," Nth Position (fall 2003)
“History,” “The Pug Dog Next Door,” and “Reverie,” Xerography (2003)
Six Poems from Matter, Ecopoetics 2 (2002)
Three Stories, West Coast Line (Fall 2002)
"'Where’s Here?'" Queen Street Quarterly (Spring 2002)
"Meaning Dreams," Goodfoot 2 (2002)
Two Poems, The Capilano Review 30th Anniversary Issue (2002)
Three Poems from Wanders [with Robin Blaser] Matrix 60 (2001)
"Human Infusoria" Sulfur 44 (1999)
"Existence in Space," Tinfish 8 (Summer 1999)
"From The Book of Words," Five Fingers Review 17 (1998)
"Abstain from Distance" and "Wall Music," Raddle Moon 17 (1998)
Eight Poems, The East Village Poetry Web
"Linearity" and "Expansion and Contraction," Potepoetzine 17
"On Lisa Robertson: Re Writing" Open Letter (Spring 2011)
"George Stanley: the Metaphysics of Place" The Capilano Review 3.14 (Spring 2011)
"Irony's Rhyme" [on Sharon Thesen] The Capilano Review 3.5 (Spring 2008)
"Irony's Eye: David Bromige" Golden Handcuffs Review 1.10 (Summer-Fall 2008)
“Innocent Looking Faces: Typography at (m)Öthêr Tøñgué Presš and Greenboathouse Books” Open Letter (Fall 2004)
Postscript: On Klaus Scherübel (Artspeak 2004)
"Gertrude Stein," Dictionary of Literary Biography: American Poets (1880-1945), Volume 54: Third Series, Part 2 (Detroit: Gale Research, 1987)
Reviews and Other Writings
[Review] A Poetics of Fragments: Ananios of Kleitor: Poems & Fragments and Their Reception from Antiquity to the Present by George Economou Golden Handcuffs Review 1.13 (2010).
[Review] Reimagining Canadian Poetry: Writing in Our Time: Canada's Radical Poetries in English (1957-2003) by Pauline Butling and Susan Rudy. Poetic Front (Spring 2009). http://journals.sfu.ca/poeticfront/index.php/pf/article/viewFile/22/20
[Review] Surfing the Fragments: Transversals for Orpheus & the untitled 1-13 by Garry Thomas Morse; A few Words Will Do by Lionel Kearns; ths is erth thees ar peopul by bill bissett Canadian Literature 198 (Autumn 2008).
[Review] Poetry Weather: Nerve Squall by Sylvia Legris; The Silver Palace Restaurant by Mark Abley; Ink Monkey by Diana Hartog; Re:Zoom by sheri-d wilson Canadian Literature 193 (Summer 2007).
[Review] Reimagining Canadian Poetry: Writing in Our Time: Canada's Radical Poetries in English (1957-2003) by Pauline Butling and Susan Rudy. Literary Review of Canada (December 2005).
[Review] Are You One of Canada’s Embarrassing Poets?: poets talk: Conversations with Robert Kroetsch, Daphne Marlatt, Erin Mouré, Dionne Brand, Marie Annharte Baker, Jeff Derksen and Fred Wah, by Pauline Butling and Susan Rudy. Terminal City, March 12, 2005.
[Review] Lyrical Prose: Discrete Categories Forced into Coupling by Kathleen Fraser Jacket 26 (2005).
[Review] A Song in Murderous Time – The Poetry of Richard Caddel, Ecopoetics 4/5(2004-2005).
[Review] Round About Seeing: Around Sea, by Brenda Ijima Jacket 25 (2004)
[Review] Undecorating the Lyric: Word Group, by Marjorie Welish Jacket 25 (2004)
[Review] Words for Darkness: Writing in the Dark by Richard Caddel Jacket 25 (2004)
[Review] Minesweep: Paravane: New and Selected Poems 1996-2003 by Frances Presley Jacket 25 (2004)
[Review] Wanted: The Author: Jill Hartman, A Painted Elephant; derek beaulieu
with wax; Kimmy Beach, Alarum Within: Theatre Poems. Canadian Literature, Online (2004).
[Review] "Lyric Capability: the Syntax of Robin Blaser" Jacket 22 (2003); Capilano Review (Fall 2003)
[Review] "Un-identified Selves: Denise Riley on Writing Others who Write Us" West Coast Line (Winter 2001-02)
[Review ] A Key into the Language of America by Rosmarie Waldrop and Mars by Norma Cole, West Coast Line (Fall 1995)
[Review] A Poetics by Charles Bernstein, West Coast Line (Winter 1992-93)
[Review] The Black Debt by Steve McCaffery, West Coast Line (Fall 1991)
[Radio Interview] Colin Browne on The New Poetics Colloquium, for Monitor on CBC (broadcast 12 October 1985)
[Radio Interview] Daphne Marlatt on "Ana Historic," for Monitor on CBC (broadcast 30 November 1985)
Not For Ourselves Alone: 50 Years At York House School, 1932-1982 (York House School, 1983)
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