This page is under construction. Thanks for your patience.


VOLTA  Signature Editions   x Winner of the A.M. Klein Prize for Poetry

A pink bathrobe turns into a kingfisher; a kitchen floor displays the stigmata of an oncoming storm; a Stone Age axe-head surfaces in France for someone from Newfoundland to stumble over; the covers of a book vibrate through broken intimacy. Here, friendship hasthe power to transform; love, to disembody. In a series of radical translations of the Earl of Surrey's sixteenth-century sonnets, a garden of plastic delights uproots the pastoral scene; a gallant compliment on social pedigree translates as salacious appreciation for a chef's handling of a ripe tomato. The poems of Volta turn place and time over on themselves, examining how we make what we call home, and what it is to be in relation: to people, to place, to history. A shape-shifting speaker rejects the idea of a singular self, and invites the reader to join a quest for that hypothetical meeting-place where community beckons but is never reached.

    "In these nervy, insightful poems, Susan Gillis roams through the corridors of free verse and into the open room of the sonnet....It is difficult to know what to admire most" --Stephanie Bolster

    "Intelligent, sophisticated, witty...this is poetry of both virtuosity and feeling" --Mary di Michele

SWIMMING AMONG THE RUINS  Signature Editions  x Nominated for the Pat Lowther Award and the ReLit Award

These poems imagine the reconciliation of material reality with the spirit's longing, through travel, the physical displacement of time and space, through contemplation, and through the unsettling of language. The submerged foundations of a ruined city, place names that recall the past, ancient statuary, a drop of water echoing in an empty tomb, personal memories, heat left on a path walked by generations—these remnants of passage are examined intensely, often through a lens rippled by water or vapour, looking back toward their origins and forward into the possibilities of transformation.

    "Rapt, wholly attentive to the tang of the moment...thresholds of risk and awakening" --Don McKay

    "Her poems brim with sensual, exact images" --Michael Harris


Kitchen Floor  Delirium Press

    A limited edition broadside illustrated by Lori Doody


THE ECHOING YEARS Randall Maggs, Stephanie McKenzie & John Ennis, editors

THE NEW CANON Carmine Starnino, editor

THE MARCH HARE ANTHOLOGY Adrian Fowler, editor

READING WRITERS READING Danielle Schaub, editor and photographer


You can order my books from and fine bookstores.

HOME        BIOGRAPHY        LINKS        CONTACT    Return to Intro