In her debut collection, 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.
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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.
— Rhonda Batchelor, 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
Ingrid Ruthig’s poems make possible, as the American poet James Dickey would have it, “the deepest kind of personal possession of the world.” On offer are long views, in which “not glancing behind us. We just go on,” as well as intimate observations of ordinary life; noting that skin is an organ “shifting across sleep’s dunes,” or that a childhood caper with siblings is forever bound to “shared corners of [ ] sight.” 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.
— Jill Stoner, Canadian Architect
This book bursts with images that surprise and glow . . . The poet’s eye sharply observes our present ways within a lineage of the past while commenting, critiquing, and musing on where the future could take us.
— Melshean Boardman, Northumberland Today
Fitzhenry & Whiteside. March, 2016. Trade paperback. 88 pp. ISBN-13: 9781554554027. Available from the publisher, independent booksellers (via 49th Shelf or BookManager.com), Chapters.Indigo.ca, and others. || Read the press release. || Book a reading with Ingrid. || Read an interview with Ingrid (June 2017). || Listen to Ingrid discuss and read poems from the book on “Word on the Hills” (first aired on Northumberland 89.7FM in April, 2016). || Listen to her September, 2016 “Howl” CIUT 89.5FM interview.
During his long career, Canadian poet, novelist, and essayist David Gordon Helwig (1938-2018) published close to fifty books and edited numerous others. 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 is the first to gather together 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 Ingrid Ruthig (editor).
Guernica Editions. September 1, 2018. Essential Writers series, Volume #49. Trade paperback. 146 pp. ISBN 13: 9781771832908, ISBN 10: 1771832908 (softcover). Also: ISBN: 9781771832915 (epub). ISBN: 9781771832922 (Kindle). || Read the publisher’s press release. || Order a copy from Guernica Editions, independent bookstores, or from Chapters.Indigo.ca. || Read tributes to David Helwig in The Guardian, CBC, and the Globe and Mail. || Read Ingrid’s own tribute and her remembrance of David Helwig’s last public reading in Charlottetown PEI.
THE ESSENTIAL ANNE WILKINSON
A selection of poems
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, #11 in the Essential Poets Series from Porcupine’s Quill, are selected and introduced by Ingrid Ruthig (editor), and include a bibliography and brief biography.
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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. — Owen Percy, 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.
— Melissa Dalgleish, 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.
— Jeremy Luke Hill, 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.
— Shawna Lemay, CanadianPoetries
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.
— Karen Rigby, Foreword Reviews
Porcupine’s Quill. November, 2014. Volume 11, Essential Poets Series. Trade paperback. 64 pp. ISBN-13: 9780889843769. || Preview. || Learn more about Wilkinson’s work from A.J.M. Smith and Robert Lecker. || Read Ingrid’s “At the Desk” feature on Open Book Toronto, and her presentation of Wilkinson on Brick Books’ Celebration of Canadian Poetry. || Listen to Anne Wilkinson read, from the album “Six Toronto Poets”. || Listen to Ingrid and other Essential Poets editors, Amanda Jernigan and Shane Neilson, discuss the series on “ArtWaves” with Bernadette Rule. || Teachers, visit the PQL website for Ingrid’s “Unpacking Poetry: Exploring the Essential Poets Series” instructor resources.
Slipstream is a poem sequence and artist’s bookwork, which was commissioned by the Visual Arts Centre of Clarington. Rough notes Ingrid once intended for a larger narrative were instead, over several years, distilled into a sequence of twenty short, linked poems.
First presented as a textwork of twenty panels fusing Ingrid’s words and images, Slipstream was re-imagined for book form. It was produced in two limited, handmade editions, and launched in conjunction with an exhibition of the original artwork at the VAC.
ARKITEXWERKS. September, 2011. Softcover. 52 pages. Limited to 100 handmade copies, in two editions — 25 deluxe (white, numbered, SOLD OUT) & 75 standard (red). || Click cover images for more information and a glance inside the book. Purchase from the author (click red button) or at Knife|Fork|Book poetry bookstore in Toronto.
From the dictionary: synesthete: a person who experiences synesthesia. synesthesia (n.) 1. A condition in which one type of stimulation evokes the sensation of another, as when the hearing of a sound produces the visualization of a color. 2. A sensation felt in one part of the body as a result of stimulus applied to another, as in referred pain. 3. The description of one kind of sense impression by using words that normally describe another.
This volume is from the series of small chapbooks produced by LittlefishcartPress, featuring the work of Canadian poets: Leigh Kotsilidis, Gabe Foreman, Jeramy Dodds, Josh Trotter, Steven Laird, Cameron Esler, Zachariah Wells, Alex Boyd, and others.
Littlefishcart Press. ‘Chipbook’ series. Softcover. October, 2005.
Poet Richard Outram, who died in January, 2005, has been quietly lauded as a major figure in twentieth-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. Edited by Ingrid Ruthig, it includes an interview, a lecture, an elegy, and new essays by poets and writers who admire Outram’s commitment to “concision and precision” in language — Brian Bartlett, Michael Carbert, Robert Denham, Jeffery Donaldson, Steven Heighton, Amanda Jernigan, Eric Ormsby, Peter Sanger, and Zachariah Wells, with an introduction, essay, bibliography and brief biography by Ingrid Ruthig (editor).
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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
Guernica Editions. November, 2011. Essential Writers series, Volume #28. Softcover. 220 pp. ISBN13: 9781550712803, ISBN10: 1550712802. || Read about Outram’s Port Hope, Ontario home, in Ingrid’s Literary Landmark article for Open Book Ontario (archived).
s e l e c t e d a n t h o l o g i e s & o t h e r p u b l i c a t i o n s . . .
The Poetry of Wayne Clifford
“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.” — Shane Neilson, Editor.
With new essays by M. Travis Lane, Jeffery Donaldson, Ingrid Ruthig, and Shane Neilson.
Frog Hollow Press. Spring 2018. Literary Criticism Monograph #6. Printed on 80 lb. Mohawk Via Vellum and bound with endpapers into a soft cover. 112 pp. 100 numbered copies. ISBN: 9781926948614.
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 architecture-trained poets who, despite different poetic styles, find common ground in their architectural training, their views about creating art, and their individual approaches to writing poetry.
Published in the fall of 2018, this chapbook was released on November 2, to mark the occasion of the poets coming together in Toronto, Ontario for “Room to Room: Poetry & Architecture in Conversation”, an evening of readings and animated discussion held at Knife|Fork|Book poetry bookstore in Kensington Market. The volume includes poems and commentary, on the relationship between poetry and architecture by all three contributors.
ARKITEXWERKS, Fall 2018. Softcover. 4 1/2″w x 11″h. This limited-edition book is printed with archival pigment inks on 28 lb. acid-free archival Mohawk Superfine Eggshell paper, wrapped in 100% rag vellum endpapers and a cover of Strathmore 300 watercolour paper, then hand-sewn with waxed linen thread. 16 pp. 100 numbered & signed copies. Purchase at Knife|Fork|Book poetry bookstore in Toronto, or click the link below to connect & order directly from ARKITEXWERKS.
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Ingrid’s work has also appeared in: 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 (Australia) | CV2 Contemporary Verse 2 | The Dalhousie Review | Descant | Ditch (anthology) | Encore Literary Magazine | Event | Existere | The Fiddlehead | Gloom Cupboard | Grain | Harpweaver | Kaleidoscope | Letting Go (anthology) | Lichen Arts & Letters Preview | The Litter I See Project | Magma (UK) | 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 (UK) | Other Voices | Canadian Parliamentary Poet Laureate’s website | Partisan | Poet to Poet (anthology) | Pottersfield Portfolio | Prism International | Quill & Quire | Rogue Stimulus (anthology) | Room Magazine | Signal | Signatures (anthology) | Slovoto Dness (Bulgaria, in translation) | SlowCity | Sunrise with Sea Monsters | Surfacing | Textbase (Australia) | The Sketchbook Project | Transactions with Beauty | Wascana Review | Windsor Review |