Le paradis n'est pas artificiel …

Hello. I'm Maureen Evans. Spezzato is my electronic notebook. You will find many drafts here, automatic poems and gleanings, rough evolutions between paper and print, ink and pixel, and other live works of writing.

Raised in northern British Columbia, Canada, I am a poet, writer and constant traveller. At home in London and on the road, I've recently completed a first collection of poetry. This began as my MA English thesis in Northern Ireland, taking Hons at the Queen’s University of Belfast. I previously studied writing and anthropology at UBC. I love everything wild, beautiful and hard.

I hope you'll write to me.

You may have encountered my poems at The Poet in New York, or The KGB Bar reading series; or we met at Pete’s Candy Store. I’m excited by those places right now. My writing has appeared in journals and communities around the world, including Star*Line, Hubbub, Ribbons, Room of One’s Own, Fugue, Ferment Zine, Re:Verse, The Intergenerational Writers' Lab, The Ulster Tatler, and The Huffington Post

Or maybe you arrived here via Twitter, laboratory for two ongoing experiments: as the first poet there, jotting over 1500 haiku as @Maureen; and a vast collection of poetically-encoded recipes as @Cookbook. Unexpectedly successful, the latter became a published book, a reference tome of 1000 tweets, EAT TWEET (Artisan 2010).

I focus on poetic truth, and true magic: poetry as a unique record / engine of human transformation, with socially-networked narratives extending to the Web in continuation of storytelling traditions, rather than some new thing. I like enabling others' reading and writing; for example, volunteering as Poet in Residence at Youngpoets.ca, editor-tutor on high schooler-written books at 826 Valencia, transcriptionist of oral histories at McSweeney’s, and teaching adult literacy at The Carnegie Centre.

In London I started Poetica, a collaborative editing environment for writers. Then I broke away from the broad stroke to write and roam. When I’m not writing, walking long distances in foreign cities or retreating in the British Columbia rainforest, all the while paying very close attention, my favourite thing is to read many books at once.

So if you look beside my bed right now, I'm underway reading HOW LIKE FOREIGN OBJECTS, by Alexis Orgera; THE COLLECTED POEMS, by Mark Strand; MADNESS, RACK & HONEY, by Mary Ruefle; THE ELEGANT UNIVERSE, by Brian Greene; GASTROPOLIS: FOOD & NYC, eds. Annie Hauck-Lawson and Jonathan Deutsch; and THE STORIES OF Vladimir Nabokov, collecting dust because somehow reading fiction feels decadent to me.

I have a difficult time with decadence, and an easy time with rapture.

Thank you for reading poetry.