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The Jury Room Workshop

January 4th, 2004  

Featured in this section are various poets who have participated in Jury Room since its inception in 1988, and some of their poems actually workshopped, with revisions included, thanks to the suggestions of other members.

Jury Room is currently on sabbatical pending further notice. 



Maureen Glaude

A former Board member and co-publicity-manager on the Sasquatch Artists’ Performance Series, and a regular there since 1997, Maureen frequents this series, El Taller Cultural El Dorado, and others, to share poems, as well as participating in writing study groups facilitated by Sylvia Adams, and Barbara Myers (The Wellington Street Poets). She has been a member of kado ottawa since its inception. Also a former OIW (Ottawa Independent Writers) member, and participant in several critique groups. She's been a featured reader at Sasquatch, (summer 2003 and previously), and at Tree, January 2000.

Glaude’s work has appeared in several literary publications, including The Wolf Magazine, London, England, Palabras Productions, San Gabriel, California, and in the TOPS (The Ontario Poetry Society) anthology (2003), Rocks and Rhythm, and the anthology (August 2002), Earth Songs.

In 2000, she won 3rd place in the Free Verse category of the National Capital Poetry Writing Contest, Canadian Authors Association, for her poem Angel Landing.


Pool and Poetry

You ask me why I spend
hours and loonies in the pubs
shooting pool and poetry
it’s not real life, you say

I like my venues and ventures
I’m training myself
to master fresh angles
design new ways to
break onto the world
anticipate the slice and hook
align the combinations

when I share my poems
I work to float
and ventilate
feelings across the room
to enter ears of lovers
of freedom and the art
of trading story

I string images to embrace
stretch out to others’ souls
turn out my mind and theirs
as on an autumn trail

listening to the others’ works
I bathe in holy waters
in this unlikely place

back at the green felt
behind the cue stick
I position myself
focus, draw back, shoot
sink into life’s openings
try for surprises

or from old games, sure moves
around the pocket corners

you say that my friends
seated on the barstools
in the readers’ pub
are players in life
not grown-up
but you cannot show me
a saltier sample
of the real earth

and so I’ll add my name
to the poets’ sign-up sheet
but first, I’ll play the winner


(published in Sasquatch’s Twenty poems for twenty years
© 2001 Board of Directors, Sasquatch Writers Performance Series,
ISBN 0-9730202-2-9


(Guitar Senryu shared at Jury Room)

last call for the spring gig
his guitar strings still lure
her barred heart



Tree Mischief

today I caught my young cat
playing novice hockey
with a Christmas ball

I heard the rolling on hardwood floor
guessed the culprit
found the evidence

oh, she finds this
a merry adventure time
sitting pretty
seeming innocent now
grey, white, brown
in amidst the spruce boughs, spying


All poems © Maureen Glaude 


Chris Sorrenti

A long time resident of Ottawa, Chris Sorrenti first started writing poetry at age 15, as a means of dealing with the pressures of adolescence, and has been hooked ever since. In his own words, “I find reading and writing poetry a spiritual experience, helping me to survive difficult times, and to celebrate the positives in my life.”


In 1992, Sorrenti joined the executive of the Tree Reading Series, finishing as Director before stepping down in 1994, and is currently web master for the Sasquatch Artists’ Performance Series in Ottawa.


His work has appeared locally in periodicals such as Bywords (1991), Alter Vox (2000). In 2000, his poem, Super Nova was published in the Australian (Canberra) arts newspaper, Muse. More recently, his poem, Less Cluck But More Meat For Your Buck, won honorable mention in the 2001 Ray Burrell Award for poetry, and subsequently published in Vol. 11 of the creative writing periodical, Grist Mill. 




            Like the fabled El Dorado

            it beckoned ever stronger now

            just over the horizon

where all our relatives could be found


Early childhood visits in summers

past dreams fulfilled

            when to a small boy

wrapped in the innocence of the 60s

two weeks there

seemed too long in coming

            then gone so fast


            This air force family - no more  

            transferring itself

            to small town Canada          

now only 40 miles 

from the poetry of a million lights

Peace Tower and Parliament

and leading to them

a ten mile strip called Bank Street

where anything could be bought


But for now

we were happy with main street

covered in a five minute walk

where one could comfortably

say hello to strangers

easily recognize fellow residents

from those out of town

and at home

leave doors unlocked


In summer

my brother and I

would ride our bikes

up to the highway Dairy Queen

and while eating our cones

smile at the ribbon of gold

eyes following to where

it disappeared on the horizon

and to a dream fulfilled

but a few years away






            the Environmental Advisory Council’s a fun place to be

            there’s Max McDonald with a pencil in his mouth

            running back and forth to the telex machine

            a champion of bureaucratic power

            you can hear his hearty laughter right down the hall

            as he greets colleague after necktied colleague


            his assistant Veena Pumernell always has a smile

            although buried knee deep in the paperwork

            funding’s down slightly but the public is concerned

            so her contract will surely be renewed

            she may be Indonesian of origin and custom

            but her heart’s in the Canadian shield


            there are multinational conglomerates defecating on the countryside

            but nothing gets past these guys

            the Prime Minister’s got an ear hanging on the wall

            though CEAC’s outside the main departmental organization

            drop by for coffee on a Friday afternoon

            they’ll be happy to discuss the latest ecological trends






            some of us, cotton

            others, leather

            still others

            mere burlap

            like or it not

            all stitched together

            the only certainty

            who decides

            the next design

            we stretch across our backs


            the untouchables


            some of us, chrome

            built only for show

            others, steel

            spoked for endurance

            all endlessly turning

            round that great big wheel

            while still others

            only the asphalt beneath


            some of us, tin

            permanently bent

            others, titanium

            absorbing high stress

            in the foulest weather

            quickly returned

            to their original shape

            once the storm clears


            who will lose

            and who will win

            who will be fat

            and who will be thin

            who will live

            and who will die        

            ours is not to question why

            only realize who decides


            the untouchables

all poems © Chris Sorrenti
            more of Chris’ poetry available at: Chris’ Place



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