Photo by Michael Elcock

Patrick Friesen, a resident of Winnipeg for 30 years and Vancouver for a dozen years, now lives in Victoria, BC. He has published numerous books of poetry and has written several stage and radio plays. Friesen has also collaborated with choreographers, dancers, musicians and composers. He tours on a regular basis, giving readings and workshops all over the country. His book, Blasphemer’s Wheel, was awarded Manitoba Book of the Year Prize in 1996; A Broken Bowl, was a finalist for the 1997 Governor-General’s Award; and Patrick was awarded the ReLit Award for Poetry in 2012 for jumping in the asylum.

Frayed Opus_larger Patrick Friesen, Per Brask and Ulrikka Gernes have been shortlisted for the Griffin Poetry Prize for Frayed Opus for Strings & Wind Instruments. This is a new collection of poetry by Danish poet Ulrikka Gernes translated by Patrick and Per and published by Brick Books.

“This collaboration between Danish poet, Ulrikka Gernes and Canadian writers, Brask and Friesen, is astonishingly successful, every line at home in its new language. The poems have not stopped being poems. In fact, now that they are speaking through three mouths (one female, two male) they seem to have gathered an extra layer of strangeness which suits their dream-like, mutable, almost anonymous voice: ‘Since then I have been standing in the subway singing to passersby and nobody knows my name …’ The world of the poems is twilit, borderless, melancholy, associative, seeping; and these qualities are carried over from the imagery into the fluid, blended structures of the verse. Full of arresting detail and quiet everyday language, this is the second Gernes book to be translated by these writers and it is masterful.”

–Griffin Poetry Prize Judges’ Citation


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