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Poetry Canadian

City Poems

by (author) Joe Fiorito

Exile Editions
Initial publish date
Apr 2018
Canadian, General
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Apr 2018
    List Price

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City Poems has the authentic sound of the human voice, written to the rhythms, rough, often jagged, of the city. Fiorito’s writing is tight, his wit oblique, his humanity large—his unforced, unsentimental style striking the perfect tone with a keen sense of place to anchor each short/sharp poem in a compelling emotional realm. This is a collection based on 18 years of experience prowling the back streets and darker corners of the city of Toronto.

About the author

Joe Fiorito was born in Thunder Bay, Ontario. As a young man in Northern Ontario, he worked in a paper mill, surveyed roads, and laboured in bush camps prior to becoming involved in community development and arts consulting. Fiorito spent five years working with a staff of Inuit journalists at CBC Radio in Iqaluit, NWT before transferring to Regina, where he wrote, produced and directed CBC Radio's highly acclaimed "The Food Show," a weekly program about food and agriculture. Fiorito lived for many years in Montreal, where he first wrote a weekly food column for HOUR, and later signed on as a city columnist for The Montreal Gazette. His first collection, Comfort Me with Apples: Considering the Pleasures of the Table, a series of essays about food and memory drawn from Fiorito's HOUR columns,  was published by Nuage Editions (now Signature Editions) in 1994. In 2000, it was  reissued by McLelland & Stewart. Tango on the Main, Fiorito's second collection, was selected from his Gazette columns.Fiorito relocated to Toronto, writing first for The National Post and then for The Toronto Star. In 1999, he published his family memoir, The Closer We Are to Dying (M&S), which became a national best-seller and received widespread critical acclaim. This was followed by the award-winning novel The Song Beneath the Ice (M&S, 2003) and Union Station: Love, Madness, Sex and Survival on the Streets of the New Toronto. (M&S, 2007).

Joe Fiorito's profile page

Editorial Reviews

“Remarkable writing In Language that is clear, precise, and often searingly direct.” —National Post

“It is [Fiorito’s] electric imagination which lights up the book… Fiorito is a disciple of what Cyril Connolly termed 'the plain style,' simple, stripped-down Language capable of achieving an austere poetry.” —Montreal Gazette

“There’s a wise-cracking tenderness to his writing that makes him come across as a sort of Damon Runyon of the north.” —Canadian Forum 

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