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Caller ID: Poetry That Calls Back

March 13, 2023 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm PDT

On Monday, March 13 at 6pm, join Massy Arts SocietyMassy Books and a directory of authors in Caller ID: Poetry That Calls Back—featuring David Bradford, Hari Alluri and River Halen.

Crossing essays, poems and journal entries, these three collections are deeply personal, tender explorations of inheritance, grief, joy and loss through encounters in the everyday. Hosted by author, Danielle LaFrance, this evening calls us to consider the ability of language to create new ways of being. Consider these works voicemails to your future selves.

This project has been made possible by the Government of Canada. Ce projet a été rendu possible grâce au gouvernement du Canada.

This project is supported by the British Columbia Arts Council.

Registration is free/by donation, open to all and required for entrance.
Purchase at the event:
Dream of No One but Myself by David Bradford
Our Echo of Sudden Mercy by Hari Alluri
Dream Rooms  by River Halen


Venue & Accessibility

The event will be hosted at the Massy Arts Gallery, at 23 East Pender Street in Chinatown, Vancouver.

The gallery is wheelchair accessible and a gender-neutral washroom is on-site. Please refrain from wearing scents or heavy perfumes.

For more on accessibility including parking, seating, venue measurements and floor plan, and how to request ASL interpretation please visit: massyarts.com/accessibility

Covid Protocols: Masks keep our community safe and are mandatory (N95 masks are recommended as they offer the best protection). We ask if you are showing symptoms, that you stay home. Thank you kindly.


Hosted by

Danielle LaFrance is a writer, researcher, and philosopher. She authors the poetry books (often accompanied by an essay-form) #postdildo (Talonbooks 2022), JUST LIKE I LIKE IT (Talonbooks 2019), Friendly + Fire (Talonbooks, 2016) and species branding (Capilano University Editions, 2010). Other poetry and critical writing have appeared in such magazines and journals asASAP/Journal, The Capilano Review, LESTE, Tripwire, and Organism for Poetic Research. They collaborated on a co-reading and journal making endeavour About a Bicycle (with Anahita Jamali Rad) and currently on an intertextual sound project Yes, Sydo (with Josh Rose).


With Authors

David Bradford is a poet and translator based in Tio’tia:ke (Montreal). Bradford’s acclaimed debut collection, Dream of No One but Myself (Brick Books, 2021), won the A.M. Klein QWF Prize for Poetry and was a finalist for the Griffin Poetry Prize, Governor General’s Literary Award and Gerard Lampert Memorial Award. Bottom Rail on Top, Bradford’s second book of poetry, and House Within a House, his translation from the French of Désormais, ma demeure by Nicholas Dawson, are both forthcoming from Brick Books in 2023.

Hari Alluri (he/him/siya) is a migrant poet of Filipinx and South Indian descent on unceded Coast Salish territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh peoples and Kwantlen, Katzie, and Kwikwetlem lands of Hən̓q̓əmin̓əm̓-speaking peoples. Recipient of the Vera Manuel Award, he is author of The Flayed City (Kaya) and chapbooks The Promise of Rust (Mouthfeel) and Our Echo of Sudden Mercy (Next Page Press), writer-director of Pasalubong (NFB/ONF), and co-editor of We Were Not Alone (Community Building Art Works). Siya has received grants, fellowships, and residencies from the BC Arts Council, Canada Council for the Arts, The Capilano Review, Deer Lake, and others. His work appears through these venues and elsewhere: Dream Marrow catalogue (exhibit—on now at Burnaby Art Gallery), Poetry, PRISM International, and—via Split This Rock—Best of the Net 2022.

River Halen is an award-winning writer of Catalan and Danish descent living in Tio’tia:ke/Mooniyang/Montreal. Their poems and essays dealing with relation, ecology, transformation, and sexuality have been published widely in Canada, as well as in the U.S., Australia, and in translation in Japan. Their first book, Match, was shortlisted for the Trillium Book Award for Poetry, and their most recent book, Dream Rooms, a collection of essays and poems, includes works selected for Best Canadian Essays and was selected by Renee Gladman for Artforum Magazine as a top-ten pick of the year.

River has been a full-time freelance arts worker since 2011, editing fiction, non-fiction, and poetry for large and small presses. They are an acquiring editor for Brick Books and teach sessionally in the Toronto Metropolitan University publishing program.


About The Books

Dream of No One but Myself (Brick Books)

Dream of No One but Myself by David Bradford is an interdisciplinary, lyrical unravelling of the trauma-memoir-as-proof-it’s-now-handled motif, illuminating what an auto-archival alternative to it might look like in motion. Through a complex juxtaposition of lyric verse and self-erasure, family keepsake and transformed photo, Bradford engages the gap between the drive toward self-understanding and the excavated, tangled narratives autobiography can’t quite reconcile. The translation of early memory into language is a set of decisions, and in Dream of No One but Myself, Bradford decides and then decides again, composing a deliberately unstable, frayed account of family inheritance, intergenerational traumas, and domestic tenderness.

More essayistic lyric than lyrical essay, this is a satisfyingly unsettling and off-kilter debut that charts, shapes, fragments, and embraces the unresolvable. These gorgeous, halting poems ultimately take the urge to make linear sense of one’s own history and diffract it into innumerable beams of light.

Our Echo of Sudden Mercy (Next Page Press)

Our Echo of Sudden Mercy by Hari Alluri searches for the tenuous places where grief and joy entwine. At turns meditative, irreverent, and tender, the poems trace these threads through multiple forms of loss—personal and familial, cultural and planetary, quiet and violent—by encountering and moving through the everyday. “We have always been the consequence of stories,” they intone. Here, attentive to the ode in downbeats of lament, Alluri finds a restorative poetry: that the incantatory in the fragmented can be heard as a form of wholeness, that displacement can become a way of being in the world, one which holds and is held by listening, by care and collaboration.

Dream Rooms (Book Hug Press)

Part essay, part poem, part fever dream journal entry, Dream Rooms by River Halen is a book about personal revolution, about unravelling a worldview to make space for different selves and realities. Set in the years that led up to author River Halen coming out as trans, this collection concerns itself with what sits on the surface of daily life, hidden in plain view, hungry for address—what it means to take a stranger’s pet rabbit to the vet in a year of accelerating extinctions, to lose your clothes to a moth infestation then buy a duvet made of fossil fuels, to learn your bookshelf is full of work written by rapists and rape apologists, to consider a birth control device as a narrative about bodies and their possibilities, then pull the string. Deeply queer and trans not only in its content but in its thinking, Dream Rooms invites readers to that place in consciousness where fear and desire, hidden information and common knowledge brush up against each other and are mutually transformed.



March 13, 2023
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm PDT