NOW WE ARE TEN

This fall, 2016, Yoko's Dogs celebrates 10 years of making poetry together. Thanks to our friends Niki and Mathieu for hosting a greyhound of a party. Here's to 10 more!

Dogs in the Yukon...

… are part of the family.

We were a three-legged dog in Whitehorse, one of us unable to be there in person, but what a welcoming place! Haiku Canada’s Weekend got us on our feet to applaud Marco Fraticelli and Terry Ann Carter’s fabulous performance of Desire: The haiku and lost letters of Chiyo-ni: music, words, dance introducing us to an 18th century extraordinary female haiku “master.”

Chiyo-ni, woodcut by Utagawa Kuniyoshi
Whitehorse is bursting with art. Murals on buildings. Jazz musicians, playwrights, paper-makers, poets… like dogs, part of the family.

Whitehorse Totem Pole -- Jan Conn photo
And then the swift, green river full of fish, snow on treed mountains that have never been clear-cut, and the strangeness of daylight at 11 pm.

Landscape with Two of Yoko's Dogs --Mary di Michele photo

Thanks, all, for our conversations and your kindness.

MEET THE RHINOCEROS

a rhinoceros steps down/from the diorama

We're delighted to announce our chapbook Rhinoceros, beautifully produced by Gaspereau Press. We'll be launching it late May in Whitehorse, Yukon and Lee, MA.

Several years in the making, Rhinoceros is a collection of poems written entirely collaboratively, like all our work together.

We'd be happy to read from it for you! Contact us about readings byemail, yokosdogs(at)gmail.com, or use the contact form on this page. 

Copies are available at the modest price of $5 plus shipping. Contact us about purchases by email, yokosdogs(at)gmail.com, or use the contact form on this page.

Great Jane!

Jane Munro with Scott Griffin and Michael Longley (Tom Sandler photo)

Congratulations to Yoko's Dogs member Jane Munro on her 2015 Griffin Award for Blue Sonoma (Brick Books)!

FS, the Collaboration Issue

The Doggies are happy to be part of Filling Station's exciting Collaboration issue #61 alongside work by Pearl Pirie + Roland Prevost, Douglas Barabour + Sheila Murphy, Caitlin Cummings + Elodie Olson-Coons, Claudia Radmore, Jason Heroux and more.


WHO WE ARE, WHAT WE DO

The idea for Yoko's Dogs came about in 2006 around a small tin table in Montreal when the four of us, living in different places and time zones, got together and decided to explore collaboration as a way of expanding our individual practice. Over the first few months we wrote and revised, and wrote some more; read and studied and discussed the traditions of Japanese-style linked verse, all via email. We chose a system of composition and eventually decided that for readers the mechanics of this system should disappear, the way forms for moulded concrete are knocked away once the work is finished.

In 2008, we met for a three-day writing party in Marshland, Ontario. Here we composed our first site-specific poem and substantially revised earlier work. At this meeting we also found our name, in one of our earliest images:

Yoko's house is dark, her dogs
tied in front, too cold to bark. 
  Since then we have continued to work from distant places, meeting annually to compose and revise. With the publication of our first full-length collection, Whisk (Pedlar Press, 2013), we have begun to explore polyphonic composition and performance.

In keeping with tradition, which we happily and radically break in order to invent anew, the Doggies' practice is rigorous, exacting, challenging, and exuberant: arf for arf's sake!