How to Be Human
How to Be Human was published as part of the 2021 John Newlove Award, granted for "Air Kiss", which appeared in Bywords.ca and about which contest judge Elee Kraljii Gardiner said, "This poem cleaned my smeared glasses and straightened my collar." Is this chapbook a study guide? Or merely the interrogations of the perpetually confused? On this question, at least, the jury will be perpetually out.
Brownfields are contaminated lots that dot the landscape from coast to coast, emblems of our post-industrial society. They are at once more and less than derelict space: unsuited for development without costly remediation, many will lie fallow forever, rebuking us with a silence that is not the charged quiet of nature but the emptiness of human loss.
These brownfields serve as the dominant metaphor in this poetic “autogeography” of Owen Sound as its spaces, peoples and institutions transform over an arc of time extending from the geologic past through fin-de-siècle irony to turn of the millennium confusion. Equal parts lament and encomium, brownfields is a chronicle of Owen Sound both as a particular place and as an example of many a small Canadian city struggling to renew itself and find footing in a globalized world.
“The poems are personal and ruminative, precise and reflective.” –Andrew Armitage, in the Owen Sound Sun Times
No Sleep ‘til Eden
An augmented reality book of poetry that includes multimedia visual art, animation and video and audio clips accessible through a free online browser developed by KP9 Interactive. Do you grieve with elephants? Would you like to set up a tortoise on a blind date? Have you ever sat down on a driftwood log and taken out a bottleneck slide to sing the blues with piping plovers in the dark of a new moon? Yes? Then this book is for you.
“He says more in … two lines than many people might manage in a thousand…. I read this book twice with great delight.” – John B. Lee, in Verse Afire
Downmarket Oldies FM Station Blues
These are poems for those who would sneak up on Janus, who would swim lakes colder than space untraversed by elementary particles, who would crawl sandblasted toward an oasis in a desert of love, who would cling to life like a rain-soaked sheet.
A poem is not a mirror
but a stone in hand
to be flung at one
Word Salad — noun: a confused or unintelligible mixture of seemingly random words and phrases, specifically (in psychiatry) as a form of speech indicative of advanced schizophrenia.
Also, a CD consisting of 14 poems that try to define love, defy convention, urge cat ownership, establish reciprocal relationships, sing with the heart, list our contemporary fears, confront writer’s block, talk to the spirits of the dead, make a grocery list, proclaim one’s lust for Frida Kahlo, lament missed opportunity, conquer the tendency toward anger, and question the purpose of verse. In other words, 14 tracks inspired by just getting up in the morning. To purchase, please contact me directly.
Cover art by the astonishing Sarafin
“Sitoski … wowed the crowd with his energetic and thought-provoking words delivered with equal parts of passion and humility.” – Stephen Vance, in the Meaford Independent