Poetry Archive


the restoration of st. peters

rob mclennan

      the newest trend in rome, they write,
to improve historical buildings. make them
look nice.

      120,000 cubic metres of scaffolding
are hard to contradict.

      newly painted, of scrubbd marble
, of ochre, green & red.

      you make an argument for peace of mind.
you make an argument for something.

      for continuity. an exterior decorators catalog
, what once was uniform, if dirty, colour.



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the carcass of the old house after she moved
to the apartment. damp,
& rot. was the only one i knew who made
tomato soup w/

milk, the cloudy white stirrd in

slowly, continuous. uncle bob crushing premium plus
w/ his spoon. renovated the kitchen & the back after

husband died, his winter body brought in
after discovery in the snow, lay there cold
& stiff on the table

until the ambulence arrived, knowing
they neednt hurry. this much

is sure, is what

i know, how long

years can reach out thru, from
behind, & grab

at your neck like you were seven a second time,
scanning magazines in the wrong part

of another uncles house, black marks

over the parts of female anatomy you knew,
even then, were interesting.



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rob mclennan is an Ottawa-based poet, editor, publisher, & a few other things. the author of over 3 dozen poetry chapbooks, his seventh trade collection is paper hotel (Broken Jaw Press).

the editor/publisher of above/ground press & STANZAS magazine (both nearing 10th anniversaries), he is also responsible for a number of other books, including evergreen: six new poets (Black Moss) & side/lines: a new canadian poetics (Insomniac Press). Greenboathouse published rob's chapbook a translation in 2002.

his clever website is located somewhere areound here.


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