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Sarah Burgoyne

Sarah Burgoyne is an experimental poet. Her first collection Saint Twin (Mansfield: 2016) was a finalist for the A.M. Klein Prize in Poetry (2016), awarded a prize from l'Académie de la vie littéraire (2017) and shortlisted for a Canadian ReLit Award. Other works have appeared in journals across Canada and the U.S., have been featured in scores by American composer J.P. Merz and have appeared with or alongside the visual art of Susanna Barlow, Jamie Macaulay and Joani Tremblay. She currently lives and writes in Montreal.



a light in the golden liquid is amber and makes me happen

in this heart, a hold, and in the hold, amber, and in the amber, relief

this is the page and its petrichor


a less distasteful word or phrase is the delegation of the infidel finally the manila dusk of your starlight appears lit above the desert mountain cat eye in the door, desiring the ensuing damnation of what fear does to you / to me


i effervesce to the top of my life guilty and i burst i sit in the exploded surface i bombinate and quell held till i release, a redundancy yes, this is one the brown day holds me supine in its paper vein a drop rolls along my spine and i hold it till it drops

spasm of the spear in the heart can’t own anything anymore

built by fuckedness and its clinomania wanting it all / maybe

brought near a curiosity here where I’m made selfish


a broken verdure spills across the season and opens me to a squall of light

the deep says follow my course

to the tarrying blank at the heart of me

a temple of delicacy is you

in the pond

the needle at the heart of your ache is wet

and cracks me like a sidewalk in weather and i am gorged by lawless air

the hush of leaf in leaving words you say

daybreak is grief

sunk in a gully of fanatical weight i'll say it again i'm obsessed with beginnings


i wonder who will read the fall of this leave now--the stuck and dappled one

i am stuck leaving

the play of bark emerges as relief and makes an event of the poem and the tree

the grass's beneath is the home of me the parade of foam on the surface of night

i fumbled the finishing touch, didn't i?

the caw night, the meat night grew tall held back the wise army of suns i betray each day with sleeplessness

i am poised with weather at my very own door

the light across me makes the shadow,


but this is not how i see you

in the velvet gaze of morning, drunk as an idiot with no narrative to boot

a sign of weakness


dear you, who are the amber liquid through which light moves imperfectly, which is what creates beauty, there's a curve of red over my life i touch with my hand this pond, which is the heart unfurling as tape

i place over the wound, imperfectly and this is beauty

cluster of rot at the heart of the flower this is where i am

the two lines i draw around you sever you doubly

i use bittenness and stuckness to shut the box imperfectly

to send it away again



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