Editor’s Notes

Happy Autumn poetry enthusiasts!

I am very pleased to present this month’s issue of poetry, which ranges from the lyrical to the experimental, the poignant to the witty. Thank you to all poets who submitted their wonderful words.

I am pleasantly surprised by how many poems we received for next month’s Autumn Mystique issue. We have much to choose from. I hadn’t realized Ottawa was so steeped in mystique and mysticism. No wonder it gets so foggy at times. If you have any other ideas for themes, please send them in.

September is proving to be a very exciting month for literary events. If you haven’t yet had the opportunity to attend a poetry reading, now is the time to do so as autumn fires up Ottawa’s poetic frenzy. One of my favourite places to read and hear poetry is Cafe Nostalgica on Thursday evenings. The poetry and music open mic is hosted by Kristy McKay and Trevor Tchir. This little red brick house at the University of Ottawa fills with the sound of original voices and music. It gets very busy. The poetry open mic starts at 8:30, so show up around 8 to get yourself a good seat, or sign up to read. You just never know who might show up.

October will be even more active with the occurrence of the International Writers’ Festival. Bywords will have calendars at the festival, and Nicholas Hoare Books will be selling copies of the Bywords Quarterly Journal.

During the festival on October 9, be sure to attend the launch of Cinquefoil, a collection of poems written by a stellar group of Ottawa poets who include Bywords advisory editor Seymour Mayne and former Bywords editor Susan Robertson. Further details are in the events section of our site.

Our own Fall reading will take place on October 26 at Chapters, downtown. The last two have been fun and joyful with beautiful music, attentive and large audiences, and outstanding poetry. Stay tuned for more details on the Quarterly Journal page.

If you would like to purchase back or current issues of the BQJ, please contact me.

Other poetry activities going on include the launch of a new zine, and the addition of online poetry open mic page for Sasquatch to name a few. Rumours abound of a spoken word CD being launched soon, and a documentary on performance poetry as well. The literary scene in Ottawa is sizzling!

Finally, members of Bywords will be taking part in AidsWalk Ottawa which takes place on Saturday, September 20 at 7:00 pm. We will be raising money for the Aids Committee which counsels people with HIV/AIDS. If you’d like to make a pledge or join our team, please contact me. The event will begin with a party hosted by Oni the Hatian Sensation. For further details about the walk, please visit www.aidswalkottawa.ca.

Thanks to Stéphanie and Krisha for choosing the poems in this issue with me.

If you have any comments about this month’s issue or would like to volunteer time, money, virtual hugs or pats on the shoulder etc, please e-mail me: editor@bywords.ca

Amanda Earl