In her debut full collection of poems, Ingrid Ruthig records the ebb and flow of individual life through time, landscape, and this collective existence. How we connect with the past, where we are now, and our personal convergences, despite our inherent separateness, are all part of the journey. Ruthig also explores the need to create, to build a deeper sense of self, of belonging: questioning, observing, then striving to respond. Her voice is confident, concentrated, wry. This is a book of poems about the dynamic of being, and our shifting perception of who we are from one moment to the next.
“Formally elegant, Ruthig’s poetry is smooth and reflects an impeccable ear. Ruthig picks up an idea and unspools it to its end with precision and calmness. This is a book that took its time to be made and for its performance, being consistently excellent from front to back. Her poems read as sonic and “sombre supplicant to the whims / of living, age, genetics, and weather” fashioned into a “stronghold of I.”“
— Jury, League of Canadian Poets’ Gerald Lampert Memorial Award
“This is a poet who has her eyes wide open to the absurdities of modern life — this “being.” … Ruthig excels in recognizing and capturing those elusive hints of the mystery of time’s unfolding and our helplessness within it. As intently as Ruthig observes, it’s perhaps her listening — to sounds and silences alike — that inspires some of her poems’ finest touches.”
— Arc Poetry Magazine
“To use words from “Doorway,” one of the most enigmatic of Ruthig’s poems, her subjects frequently involve the “were” inside the “are, or the thin/now of between.” Her architectural training and practice may coincide with the clarity, concision and visual richness of her poems, but the poems are also invested with metaphysical and emotional ambiguities. She has a baroque sense of fluidity, transience and riddling premonition. She is fascinated by the askew, the slant, the unknown country which is a continuously receding destination. Ruthig’s is a poetry of very high ability and intelligence.”
— Peter Sanger, author of Aiken Drum, poetry editor of The Antigonish Review
“Accomplished in both energetic and elegiac tonalities, Ruthig’s melodious lines and enjambments offer visually rich detail and faith in living, despite the “headstrong, outbound current.” While they recuperate and celebrate nature and attachments, these poems manage a philosophical eye that is a rare delight in a début collection.”
— Nyla Matuk, author of Sumptuary Laws and Stranger
“Present with This Being are Ontario and the north, freezing winds and fertile soils, deep roots of tradition and looming winds of change. If there is architecture here, it manifests as the edifice of a Canadian soul, built of words that are both monumental and humble. [… T]he poems embody the emotional structure of what it means to belong north of the 49th parallel.”
— Canadian Architect
“With her narrative prowess in full force, Ruthig imbues each piece with a sense of timelessness and a wisdom of the ages. Are we ready to pay attention?” (on poems found in This Being)
— The Malahat Review
“This book bursts with images that surprise and glow.”
— Northumberland Today
Despite an impressive post-secondary education and a body of work that spans more than twenty books and seven decades, Elizabeth Brewster’s quiet humility in the face of “all that tradition” of the western literary canon belies her contribution to the nation’s cultural history. Perhaps fittingly, her poems demonstrate a sense of isolation, a quest for selfhood, a desire to understand and to be understood. Often conversational in tone, the directness in her poems is supported by a deliberate economy of language and freedom from the restrictions of traditional form.
Volume editor Ingrid Ruthig examines the aesthetic touchstones, stylistic shifts and thematic range in the poetry of a woman “whose work is included in critical anthologies while her name is missing from their introductions.”
Essential Poets series, Volume #22. Porcupine’s Quill (Erin, ON, 2021) ISBN-13: 9780889848788 (trade paperback); ISBN: 9780889848863 (ebook)
“Brewster’s simple style, homely images and her surprising depth and ability to connect almost matter-of-factly with the reader makes hers a legacy worth preserving.” — The Fiddlehead
“How Brewster achieved so much in her life yet still flies under the radar of ‘well‐known’ Canadian authors remains a mystery. … Both Porcupine’s Quill and editor Ingrid Ruthig are to be commended for drawing a new generation’s attention to this important poet.” — The Malahat Review
“This slim volume is short compared to the extensive bibliography of Brewster’s work included at the end, but it’s extremely effective: if I’ve ever known Elizabeth Brewster, the memory has been lost, but I do know her now – and I’m definitely interested.” — The Miramichi Reader
“Ruthig’s selections in The Essential Elizabeth Brewster encourage us to receive and honour a rich literary inheritance from one of our elder poets. Predecessors like Brewster carry in the marrow of their words the possibility of an expanded field, a holistic vision. In such a place, the melding of words, musicality, and silences prompts us to open to the mysteries of being in the world here, now. Her poems vibrate in both time and a timeless zone where the voices of past and present are simultaneously distinct and one.” — The British Columbia Review
Canadian poet, novelist, and essayist David Helwig (1938-2018) published close to fifty books and edited numerous others over a long career. He also wrote for television, worked at the CBC, taught at Queen’s University, was Poet Laureate of Prince Edward Island, and received the Order of Canada. Yet, his name remains little known outside the literary world. This volume presents new essays, an interview, a bibliography and brief biography, and revisits past reviews to explore the extensive range of Helwig’s talents and accomplishments, and to introduce his written body of work.
With contributions from Douglas Glover, Simon Lloyd, Shane Neilson, Mark Sampson, Lorraine York, rob mclennan, George Fetherling, D.G. Jones, Tom Marshall, along with an introduction and essay from editor Ingrid Ruthig.
Essential Writers series, Volume #49.
Guernica Editions (Toronto, ON, 2018) ISBN-13: 9781771832908, ISBN-10: 1771832908 (trade paperback); ISBN: 9781771832915 and ISBN: 9781771832922 (.epub or .mobi)
Anne Wilkinson’s poetic career emerged during a time of few Canadian poets — and even fewer who were women. The Essential Anne Wilkinson showcases the work of her abbreviated but meaningful career, with poems that range from intellectual and symbolic lyrics, to direct, incisive satire… [and] gives voice to a highly regarded but oft-forgotten poet, who introduced a unique female perspective to the Canadian modernist movement.
The poems in this volume are introduced by editor Ingrid Ruthig and include a bibliography as well as a brief biography.
Essential Poets series, Volume #11.
Porcupine’s Quill (Erin, ON, 2014) ISBN-13: 9780889843769 (trade paperback); ISBN 0889848173, 9780889848177 (digital edition)
“The variety of poems in this collection paints a just and enticing portrait of Wilkinson’s diverse oeuvre, while highlighting the imagery that defines her work as hers. It is an essential Essential for Canadian poetry.” — Canadian Literature
“Ruthig has succeeded in ways that few of Wilkinson’s previous editors have: she has selected the best of Wilkinson while representing the full scope and sweep of her poetic achievements.”
— The Bull Calf Review
“The strength of the collection is in…the interplay between its intimate voice and its careful technique, and it rewards a reading that is attentive to both these elements as well. It is a strong addition to the Essential Poets Series.”
— From Word to Word
“Beautifully contextualized and lovingly presented, this collection of twenty-five poems is a most pleasing way to experience the work of Anne Wilkinson.”
— Canadian Poetries
“An arresting look at one poet’s consistent vision. … With smartly arranged variety, this is a worthy introduction to Wilkinson’s work, and a useful addition to collections on women’s studies as well as modernism.”
— Foreword Reviews
Slipstream is a poem sequence and artist’s bookwork, commissioned by the Visual Arts Centre of Clarington and held in their permanent collection.
The original written work “Slipstream”, comprised of twenty linked small poems, was distilled over several years from rough notes initially gathered for a larger narrative.
First exhibited as a twenty-panel textwork (see Artwork slideshow), Slipstream was then re-imagined for the codex (book) form, produced simultaneously in two limited, handmade editions*, and launched in conjunction with an exhibition of the original artwork at the VAC in fall 2011.
ARKITEXWERKS (2011) ISBN: N/A
“In Slipstream, Ingrid Ruthig brings to life the passage of 18 hours from a 19th-century manor-house window overlooking Lake Ontario. The artist calls the pieces a ‘textwork’, which combines language with images to deepen the expression of the 18 hours represented in the book.“
— Open Book Ontario
A synesthete experiences the condition in which one type of stimulation evokes the sensation of another, as when the hearing of a sound produces the visualization of a colour.
This limited-edition volume of poems is one in a limited edition series of small chapbooks produced by Littlefishcart Press, featuring the work of Canadian poets Leigh Kotsilidis, Gabe Foreman, Jeramy Dodds, Josh Trotter, Steven Laird, Cameron Esler, Alex Boyd, Zach Wells, and others.
Littlefishcart Press (Peterborough, ON, 2005) ISBN: N/A
Poet Richard Outram (1930-2005) has been quietly lauded as a major figure in 20th-century English-Canadian literature. Yet in his lifetime, despite international attention, he received only minor recognition from Canada’s literary establishment. This volume presents the first posthumous panorama of Outram’s work and achievement.
With contributions from Brian Bartlett, Michael Carbert, Robert Denham, Jeffery Donaldson, Steven Heighton, Amanda Jernigan (Luke Hathaway), Eric Ormsby, Peter Sanger, and Zachariah Wells. Includes an introduction, essays and a poem, as well as a bibliography and brief biography from the editor.
Essential Writers series, Volume #28.
“This little book is an important signpost in the development of work around an important poet.” — Northern Poetry Review
“Even if you are a scholar of Outram’s work you will be further enlightened by the light these essays shed.” — New Pages
o t h e r p u b l i c a t i o n s
This critical series deliberately selects for coverage poets who are not the darlings of prize culture. … Think of how we conceive of ourselves on curriculum vitae, as a series of discrete accomplishments. I am this. I am that. Now make identity not a thing, not a compendium, but a process. This is what Clifford’s poetry can give you.
With essays by M. Travis Lane, Jeffery Donaldson, Ingrid Ruthig, and Shane Neilson (editor).
Literary Criticism Monograph #6
Frog Hollow Press (Victoria, BC, 2018) ISBN-13: 9781926948614 (trade paperback; limited edition of 100 numbered copies)
ROOM TO ROOM
Poetry & Architecture in Conversation
We awake in its wake…
We are at the bridge, the crossing…
We write, as we build, because we can imagine…
These are some of the ideas driving the poems of Ted Landrum, Komi, Olaf, and Ingrid Ruthig, three poets who, despite differing styles, find common ground in their shared architectural training, their views about creating art, and their individual approaches to writing poetry.
Published in Fall 2018, this chapbook of poems and commentary marks the occasion of these three poets coming together in Toronto, Ontario on November 2 for “Room to Room: Poetry & Architecture in Conversation”, an evening of readings and discussion held at Knife|Fork|Book poetry bookstore.
Limited edition* of 100 numbered & signed copies of 16 pp. Printed with archival pigment inks on 28 lb. acid-free archival Mohawk Superfine Eggshell paper, wrapped in 100% rag vellum end papers and a cover of Strathmore 300 watercolour paper, hand-sewn with waxed linen thread.
ARKITEXWERKS (2018) ISBN: N/A
*Copies can still be purchased from the author.
a r t i s t ‘ s b o o k s
A selection of periodicals, projects, and anthologies in which Ingrid’s work has appeared over the past two decades:
A Rewording Life (anthology) | The Antigonish Review | Best Canadian Poetry in English 2012 (anthology) | Books in Canada | Brick Books Celebration of Canadian Poetry | CanadianPoetries.com | CBC Canada Writes | CNQ Canadian Notes & Queries | Cordite (AUS) | CV2 Contemporary Verse 2 | The Dalhousie Review | Descant | Ditch (anthology) | Encore Literary Magazine | Event | Existere | The Fiddlehead | Gloom Cupboard (USA/DNK) | Grain | Harpweaver | Kaleidoscope | Letting Go (anthology) | Lichen Arts & Letters Preview | The Litter I See Project | Magma (GBR) | Maisonneuve | Matrix | The Malahat Review | Mess: The Hospital Anthology | The Nashwaak Review | National Post | The New Quarterly | Northern Poetry Review | Numéro Cinq | One Ticket, Five Rides (anthology) | Open Book Ontario | Open Book Toronto | Other Poetry (GBR) | Other Voices | Canadian Parliamentary Poet Laureate’s website | Partisan | Poet to Poet (anthology) | Pottersfield Portfolio | Prism International | Quill & Quire | Resisting Canada (anthology) | Rogue Stimulus (anthology) | Room Magazine | Signal | Signatures (anthology) | Slovoto Dness (BGR, in translation) | SlowCity | Sunrise with Sea Monsters | Surfacing | Textbase (AUS) | The Sketchbook Project (USA) | Transactions with Beauty | Wascana Review | Windsor Review |
Limited-edition poem broadsides are available from Ingrid’s imprint ARKITEXWERKS. Connect to inquire about price and to order.