Writer-in-residence at Historic Joy Kogawa House in January and February 2019
Kevin Spenst is the author of Ignite, Jabbering with Bing Bong, (both with Anvil Press), and over a dozen chapbooks including Pray Goodbye (the Alfred Gustav Press), Ward Notes (the serif of nottingham) and most recently Upend (Frog Hollow Press). His work has won the Lush Triumphant Award for Poetry, been nominated for both the Alfred G. Bailey Prize and the Robert Kroetsch Award for Innovative Poetry, and has appeared in dozens of publications including, the Malahat Review, Prairie Fire, CV2, the Rusty Toque, BafterC, Lemon Hound, and the anthology Best Canadian Poetry 2014. Kevin Spenst is one of the co-organizers of the Dead Poets Reading Series which takes place every other month at the Vancouver Public Library.
From January to the end of February, Kevin‘s goal was to start his first book of short fiction, which is rooted in the Mennonite refugee experience centred around South Vancouver in the 20s and 30s and branching out to 1495 Southwest Marine Drive, where his mother lived in the late 30s.
Furnishing his stories with Vancouver and world history, he hopes to bring an element of the surreal with an eye to creating a kind of Mennonite magic realism.
Latest Blog Postings by Kevin Spenst
Poetry Night at Kogawa House! A limited number of tickets are available now for Poetry Night at Historic Joy Kogawa House, September 16 from 7:00 PM onwards.
Guest Post by Kevin Spenst No matter how quiet, every good poem has a gregarious underside where it kvetches, confers, and canoodles with a great many other poems. Lifting any solid piece of poetry, we’ll hear other poems and it behooves us as writers who hope to have...
Guest Post By Kevin Spenst Ever since I can recall, I’ve been a maker. Not of anything structurally sound, internally robust, or directly useful to the feeding, clothing, or sheltering of anything or anyone. No, I’ve been obsessed with making ephemera, tiny little...
When I arrive at the Kogawa House and I press the code to let myself in, words leap out of my mouth to fill the empty house: “Tada ima!” The direct translation of this Japanese expression is: here now. A minimal way of saying: I’m home.
I can’t believe my good fortune to be doing my first residency at the Joy Kogawa House. I will be living not only in Joy Kogawa’s childhood home, which has provided her and countless Canadians with so much inspiration, but I will also be living blocks away from where my mother lived in the late 1930s.