Saturday, January 30, 2010

Declining Gracefully

I've been a fan of Rob Budde's writing since reading his intriguing novel The Dying Poem (2002), and have continued to follow his poetry and experiments with prose poems over the years. I was also honoured to spend some time with him as a guest in his creative writing class at the University of Northern British Columbia 2007, and still have wonderful memories of being introduced to the diverse and dynamic Prince George writing community through Rob's efforts. Thus I was happy to be invited by BookThug to help edit Declining America, a new collection of Rob's poetry. It's Rob's most assured and challenging writing yet, deploying a range of forms to explore the concept of America as a linguistic construction. While displaying an affinity for late KSW poetics-- particularly as expressed by writers like Jeff Derksen and Kevin Davies--Rob, having been born in the U.S., brings an insider's perspective to his critique of American ideological formations while maintaining his ex-centricity as a northern B.C. poet. Well worth checking out.