Roy Miki

Episode 9: Producing Flow: A Conversation with Roy Miki and Mike Barnholden

Sep 22, 2020

Show notes

This reading and conversation were recorded during a TIA House event called “Producing Flow” in October 2019.


Roy Miki grew up in Winnipeg and moved to Vancouver in 1967. He has published widely on Asian Canadian writing, Canadian Literature, cultural activism, and contemporary poetry, and has edited works by George Bowering, bpNichol, and Roy K. Kiyooka. He wrote Redress: Inside the Japanese Canadian Call for Justice (2004) and In Flux: Transnational Shifts in Asian Canadian Writing (2011), as well as 6 books. His third book of poems, Surrender (2001), received the Governor General’s Award for Poetry. He has also co-written, with his wife Slavia, a children’s book, Dolphin SOS (2014), awarded the 2014 BC Book Prize for best illustrated children’s book. Roy received the Order of Canada in 2006 and the Order of British Columbia in 2009.

Mike Barnholden was born in Moose Jaw on Treaty 4 territory. He has worked in construction, agriculture and forestry, as a childcare worker and disability advocate. He worked at the Native Education Centre, UBC and finally Emily Carr. He has also worked in publishing at Talonbooks, NewStar, Tsunami, West Coast Line and Line Books. He has written 10 books of poetry and several non-fiction titles such as Circumstances Alter Photographs, Reading the Riot Act, and translated Gabriel Dumont Speaks. His editorial work includes Writing Class: The Kootenay School of Writing Anthology and poetry collections such as Miki’s FLOW and Garry Thomas Morse’s forthcoming Lexicon Standoff. He has recently worked on 360 Riot Walk and teaches creative writing at the Gathering Place.


4:42—Roy Miki reads “Seawall Ambit”
9:54—The book Mike refers to is Muriel Kitagawa’s This is My Own: Letters to Wes & Other Writings on Japanese Canadians, 1941-1948
10:15—Mike talks about Helen Adam reading at Simon Fraser University
11:40—Roy’s first book was Saving Face: Poems Selected, 1976–1988, Winnipeg: Turnstone Press, 1991.
12:05—Mike refers to Cassandra Kobayashi’s Justice in Our Time
12:13—Mike refers to George Bowering’s A Record of Writing
12:37—Mike talks about Pacific Windows by Roy Kiyooka
15:41—Mike names other members of the editorial board at Talonbooks: Jeff Derksen; Stephen Collis; Sachiko Murakami; Phinder Dulai; Catriona Strang and Jordan Abel.
16:20: Mike refers to Fred Wah’s Scree: The Collected Earlier Poems, 1962-1991, ed Jeff Derkson.
16:30—Mike talks about the work of Phyllis Webb.
18:58—Mike reads Roy Miki’s poem “A Preface”
20:31—Mike reads Roy’s poem “Enter Here,” number 5
23:35—Roy reads “The Future Is Now”
26:01—Mike reads Roy’s poem “Riffs on Robert Kroetsch’s Lemon Poem” from the “Cloudy and Clear” section
26:57—Mike reads his own poem, “Lemonade”
27:38—Roy reads “Symptomatic”
29:02—Mike reads his own poem, “Supply Chain Management”
30:48—Roy reads “The Oblique Truth”
33:04—Roy reads “Marina-Side Dogs”
34:43—Mike reads his own poem, “Clam Bake”
37:26—Mike reads his poem “Idols”
38:01—Roy reads “Climatic”
38:54—Roy reads “Trending”
40:53—Mike reads Roy’s poem “This Side: Victoria Park, Calgary—after Roy Kiyooka”
42:08—Roy refers to the collages from “Enter Here,” the final poem in Flow. The poem has five sections of four parts each: three text and one image.
43:04—Roy reads from “Enter Here,” Five
51:10—Mike reads his own poem, “Prospectus”
51:57—Roy reads “Riffs on Robert Kroetsch’s ‘Lemon Poem’”

Images From “Enter Here”

One 534

Two 537

Three 540

Four 543

Five 546

TIA House recognizes the generous support of the Canada Research Chairs program and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council. We also appreciate the support of the Faculty of Arts and the Department of English at the University of Calgary, where our offices are housed, as well as the guidance of Marc Stoeckle at the Taylor Family Digital Library. TIA House is run by Larissa Lai, Mahmoud Ababneh, Rebecca Geleyn, Paul Meunier, and Joshua Whitehead. Our Intro/Outro music is “Monarch of the Streets” by Loyalty Freak Music, accessed from the Free Music Archive.