Wednesday, September 10, 2008


Michael Lista for DESK SPACE

My apartment has four rooms: bedroom, john, office, kitchen.

This is the office.

Turn right another 90 degrees to find the elusive poet eating Captain Crunch. The picture above my head, above the bookshelf, is titled "The Death of the Young Poet" -- a spectacular find from W.S. Welsh Bookstore on St. Viateur. The print shows a wan young man having just expired below an open window, to his left a chest of papers all-too recently torn up, burned, one can assume tearfully etc..., and a single candle on the night table caught a moment after being extinguished. i.e. Money.

The desk. The painting above the desk is by an old roommate, Josh Guthrie, painted when he used to drink a lot of Olde English. The desk is my dad's from college. The piles tend not to make sense. On the far right today is Bloom's controversial "Best Poems in the English Language" anthology, second-to-right are translations still to do, then Layton, then the MS, obscured by chair, then Hamlet, then Dante, the last two for self-intimidatory purposes. To the right is the kitchen but don't go in there. It's not clean.


Michael Lista Michael Lista, poet.

DS When?

ML My first book, Bloom, is forthcoming from the House of Anansi. Published in Canadian and British journals and mags including The Malahat Review, PRISM International, Canadian Literature, and the art magazine Border Crossings. Poems from my first book are also included in The Best of Canadian Poems in English, appearing in September.

DS Where?

ML I almost always write at my desk and am panicked about working anywhere else. I love this room. But I've been rambling a bunch this summer and have done some of the best work I've ever done away from it.

DS What?

ML Still finishing my first book -- fingernails to cut, a nose to blow. Then I'll do something else.


NigelBeale said...

Knew I'd heard of Michael. When I read 'Border Crossings" it clicked. Meeka Walsh was raving about him in a workshop she held here in Ottawa last Spring.

Alex Steed said...

I've been to this here desk space and I must say that it's a pretty magical one.

Lauren said...

This apartment looks enchanting. I'm envious of the neat piles on Michael's desk...