Nothing I Know

John Newlove








An insult to the brain;
sun’s injury, this waking
before noon,
beneath the browed indifference
of Time, adventurer of our lives.

Who can tell that will? Each
whore and man
must dine amid swill and swallow
all: drown until
one rises where another fell.

Run, dark horse,
follow the body’s teachings:
how children have accomplished this,
turned back once, and turned into us:
nothing matters, now but results.

Dean J. Baker

-excerpt from The Lost Canadian, Vol.1, 112 pages, $14.99


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Everywhere I Go – John Newlove











What are people talking about. Everywhere I go they whisper.

They stick their eyes at me, right at the base of the breastbone,
when I’m not looking.

The breastbone seems flat, pointed like a dagger to the top
of my stomach.

O, my stomach, my stomach… when the knife rips you open
it will find coffee and four strips of bacon, pieces of chewed
beard and a handwritten note saying I have left town forever

©John Newlove
– excerpt from his brilliant work, Lies, jnewlovelies1972 and from A Long Continual Argument, The Selected Poems of John Newlove

John was a friend of mine – yet I had only said hello back him when I heard him read this live one time at York University. I’d been searching for the room in which the reading was to be held, and came around a corner to come face-to-face with him, and Joe Rosenblatt.

The mothership:

©Dean J. Baker

What Literature Means In Canada






For the longest time Alice Munro slips
under a steady but constant radar, her
great works a secret pleasure, while Harpo
Marx’s secret sister drones on about
the subjugation of women, men’s inadequacy –
a real peg in the hole of cuckoo theories,
while one that basically began the popularity
of Canadian Literature couldn’t get a Canada
Council grant from the committee of consensus,
though he taught Cohen, was worshipped
by Allen Ginsberg, looked towards
by W.C. Williams and his little red wagon/wheelbarrow,
honored in the USA, by Italy, betrayed
by the small bitch who claimed to do his
autobiography, another self-promoting deceiver
And Margaret L. drank a bottle away, as
another poet Egypt-bent could not get enough
food, passing away from a blown up kidney
Purdy almost included me in an early 70’s anthology,
a “sad mistake” not doing so he stated, while
my cards and letters from Musgrave, Acorn,
Newlove, MacEwen, and dozens of letters
from Layton, signed books from Ginsberg “to
a great poet” get tossed from storage
into garbage bags for the sake of less than
a thousand dollars – an entirety of literary
history abandoned and lost, almost another tradition

©Dean J. Baker

-excerpt from a published book

The books _——–>
DarkEarthTake some time to read these reviews…. ebook Dark Earth

print Dark Earth

“….Rabelais and Hieronymus Bosch look out of dark chinks in these poems… “

“..never have I experienced poems in this form, they get under your skin, and occupy your entire being . His mastery of putting the English language to work for him, to bring to life his thoughts and what he wants to project is amazing.”

“You can certainly become a poetry lover by reading Dark Earth..”

“Having read Dark Earth by Dean J Baker my first reaction is WOW. This was written for me. His poetry speaks to me deep down in my soul. The style of writing then the naming of the poems is so on target. A must read for poetry lovers AND all who just love to read.”

“That, my friends, in one succinct movement is the Grotesque Sublime: “the posthumous twitching / of cynics en masse”. ….Rabelais and Hieronymus Bosch look out of dark chinks in these poems… instead of Emerson’s “Whim” above Dean’s lintel we might assume “Melancholy” resides here… that dark brooding that laughs below, and rises through the bones to jerk you awake from your too lazy sleep of existence.”

©Dean J. Baker