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Poetry Canadian


Typewriter Works

by (author) Cameron Anstee

Invisible Publishing
Initial publish date
Oct 2022
Canadian, Typography, Death
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Oct 2022
    List Price
  • eBook

    Publish Date
    Oct 2022
    List Price

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Winner of the Nelson Ball Prize, 2023

Shortlisted for the Archibald Lampman Award

Minimalist poetry for maximalist times.

Sheets: Typewriter Works extends the minimalist explorations of Cameron Anstee’s first collection, Book of Annotations. Prompted by receiving the Olivetti Lettera 30 typewriter that belonged to poet William Hawkins after his death in 2016, the works in this book explore how small poems operate through the freedoms and constraints of the typewriter as both a decaying machine and a mode of composition. Through engagement with writers and artists like Jiri Valoch, Barbara Caruso, Leroy Gorman, Cia Rinne, William Hawkins, Dani Spinosa, Kate Siklosi, and Norman McLaren, Sheets: Typewriter Works re-embeds the minimalist poem in the typewritten page.

About the author

Cameron Anstee is the author of one previous collection of poetry, Book of Annotations, and the editor of The Collected Poems of William Hawkins. He is the editor and publisher of Apt. 9 Press and holds a Ph.D. in English Literature from the University of Ottawa. He lives and writes in Ottawa on the traditional unceded territory of the Algonquin Anishnaabeg people.

Cameron Anstee's profile page

Editorial Reviews

"Reading Sheets is a strange and wonderful experience. At times, composed fragments are isolated outbursts, constrained by the machine itself; on other occasions, inspiration flows freely over multiple pages. By its end, what begins as a whisper – ‘after years’ – crescendos over sixteen pages before closing on the cyclical refrain – ‘after years / years’. The cacophonous conclusion implies the continuation beyond this period of productivity and experimentation that the pamphlet captures, leaving the reader pondering the possibility of what is to come."The Poetry Review

"Sheets: Typewriter Works is at once an enigmatic gift and feat of curiosity. Anstee composes the 'eternal etcetera' in this collaboration between a poet and his late friend’s Olivetti Lettera 30 typewriter. Sheets embodies a poet forwarding through language with love, carrying on through grief without backspace, tilting the page, pinning the voice. This collection is testament to how the language of love and grief can hold—and is itself—poetry."—Archibald Lampman Jury Citation

"Master of the abundant small, Anstee makes space ring and strikes up the thingness of every word in this collection of the underinked, the overinked, the visual rhythm, the taptaptapestry, lovingly spooling back to past typers and out towards you."—Susan Holbrook, author of Ink Earl

"Sheets: Typewriter Works furthers Anstee’s poetic explorations into and through the minimal, but through gestures that extend both the act and result of writing—both composition and erasure—into the deeply physical. The effect is striking and immediate... [...] There is a meditative kind of breathlessness to these understated gems, one that allows each poem to sit, not as a complete thought, but as individual gestures as both moments in space and as part of a lengthy, open-ended and even life-long sequence."—rob mclennan

“I was intrigued by how the micro transcription of an event in time—like a fly landing on the page of a book—opens into reality at large.”—Aram Saroyan, author of Complete Minimal Poems

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