March 30: Murder, meetups and the mystery man

Stephen Humphrey

(Photo by Cynthia Gould)


It was a night for mysterious strangers, like the guy with a flashing badge who apparently shepherded an online meetup group to Clinton’s.

And then there’s the mystery man who appears like a well-dressed phantom in every reader photo.

Will we ever know his true identity?

Which of our featured readers was he interested in?

Will we ever see his like again?

For more about this and other grand mysteries of our time, read on. We dare you.

Stephen Humphrey

Sandy Pool

(Photos by Stephen Humphrey)

Sandy Pool was recently dismayed to realize that a lot of her poems are about murder, extinction and death. Nonetheless she seems to have a lot of friends. The night was populated overwhelmingly by people from her online meetup group. And folks say the web discourages live interaction.

Here is an excerpt from Sandy’s book Exploding Into Night (Guernica Editions) in what she calls her “trademark stunted lyric style”:

Suddenly, it is cold. The moon arrives, heaves her swollen belly.
I never expected the slight indifference, ice in our hair.
What is it you want to say? Say it.
I have never loved you properly, or tried to.


John Toone

John Toone writes prairie poetry. For real. Poems about how prairies are not just prairies, but also tall trees, grandparents, outlaws and cities. Toone’s prairie even shows up in graphic novels, or picture books as he calls them.

“I write about our place in nature,” he says. “And how a small town like Winnipeg distorts our sense of a true story.”

John doesn’t like to drink alone. But then, who does?


Dave Morris

Dave Morris is a storyteller and improviser who thinks performance is poetry, love is comedy and babies are stupid (but we shouldn’t treat them that way).

He’ll sell you flash-drives instead of CDs, but he’s not going to take his shirt off.



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