Gwendolyn Guth
Photo by: Pearl Pirie

Past Tree Appearances


In Print

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The Flash of Longing
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Videos of Gwendolyn Guth

Open Mic
April 10, 2012

Gwendolyn Guth

Gwendolyn Guth's  poetry weaves its life around her teaching, mothering, and academic writing.  Her poems have been published by ottawater, bywords, yawp, above/ground press, Friday Circle ( The Flash of Longing  chapbook) and the University of Ottawa Press (selections in  Al Purdy: The Ivory Thought ).  She has a Ph.D. in nineteenth-century Canadian women's writing and teaches eclectically and happily in the English Department at Heritage College in Gatineau, Quebec.  Always better at writing to a deadline than to a muse, she is devoting the summer to her first full-length manuscript.

From Gwendolyn Guth


Dirt discourses with the hedonist , the wallower-

cry baby tears hot for lost stem cells, secret stash

of marrows, sweet spot  of putrefaction.


In the final stage, everything is liquid.  But dirt dines

on chunky obsolescence, eczema-baked hands

and well-marbled thighs tumbled in grass.  True compost,


of course, is  a vegetable matter; it doesn't evolve me.

Yet that backyard aerobic calendar of demise reminds,

sweet silage smell apart, of the way of all flesh.   Doesn't it?


Avuncular dirt, dirt diable, corruption's functionary.   

Walk me under your yawned brown awning, deeper

& darker, transitive verb conversant with the motherlode,


your newest accustomer, groping for songs &  

her glasses.   Your people will be my people.



Those flirty afternoons in the Orangerie

even the bananas were hot-

peeling down

to bare white flesh

dreaming your ice-cream tongue

your succulent fingers.


The sun on your throat

licked mango, tangled

my better sense.  

The old man on the bench moved away

with the swans.  

Too much heat in our shade

too much ripeness.


Give me one more hour by that man-made lake.

Give me strawberries on a new-mown lawn

and your statuesque limbs.

Give me one more memory to make

paper gods out of hopes

living men out of fruit.


Published in The Flash of Longing,