Published through the second season of LINEbooks produced through Vancouver’s West Coast Line magazine, former Ottawa and current Vancouver poet Kim Minkus’ first trade poetry collection 9 Freight (Vancouver BC: LINEbooks, 2008), was built out of four sequences—CONDO, SAGA, GAME and title-sequence FREIGHT—her “CONDO” opens with a fragment that seems to give a sense of the sequence as a whole, writing:
I want to enter realty.
I want luxury without limit.
I want to be above it.
to live in the sultry sexy thick of it.
I want to be sold.
In much of this collection, Minkus writes poems that work as a binary, whether the text and italicized “chorus” (much like the Greeks) of “CONDO” and “SAGA,” or the back and forth of “GAME,” that work between threads that compete and eventually combine into a larger framework.
I want everything designer. I want everyone to be jealous. I want green with want. I want an overwhelming bedroom. with tassels. I want beautiful designer wallpaper. I want the bed. I want alone and overwhelming. I want cole and son. I want to cover the room. I want morning eye candy. I want to see him. I want a sneak peek. I want new covers. I want the images. I want the glass grapes hanging from the candelabra. I want ownership. I want to splurge. I want the dough for a gorgeous chair. I want him on the chair. I want everything cool. I want lust-after. I want vivid red. I want simple but sleek. I want full-sized photo slide show. I want mirrors and glass. I want great new work from the companies we already know and love. I want so sweet. I want so psyched. I want more to come.
A second collection, this one published out of Montreal’s Snare Books (an imprint of Matrix magazine) is thresh (Montreal QC: Snare books, 2009). Again, Minkus works through sections, writing five parts that seem to weave a narrative of intent—Thresh, Station, Girl, Salt and Rapture—working as a linear walk from gesture to gesture, “to beat mechanically,” the back cover tells us, writing out her “thrash.”
bracing herself in long lines. condemned. narcissus blooms in hollow forms. single file flowers. orangerie, larkspur. stilting segments. controlled release. is that you. so yellow so blue. gun-metal gilding. each a flowering cross. thorns around our heads. dormant cuttings scattered among our pillows. initial slits for grafting, lay down lay down let it cover you.
One wonders, how does one move through from flagellation to rapture? Is this stations along the path to destinations still-unseen, or a series of crosses to bear? Endlessly searching, Minkus’ thresh is a book of many openings, opposing directions, and questions turning often on themselves; who is this girl? Who is this rapture between Biblical quotes?
she in waves
submerged again and again
breaking in the heat
she broken crest
limits are too rapid
everything complicated in shape
she surface rolling unknown turns
torn in the interface
may move away
she indefinable born as ripples
histories of motion