KPU to welcome new writer-in-residence

Sheri-D Wilson to arrive late January.>/strong>
By Kier-Christer Junos
[coordinating editor]

Oft-sharing their insights and efforts with someday-novelists and tome-builders are the resident writers who frequent Kwantlen Polytechnic University. Even Margaret Atwood showed up on the Surrey campus once, though it was for a film-event. But I digress. Much like the haunt we call KPU, the decorated (and Canadian) writers-in-residence know a couple of things about concrete. Language, that is. Work with me.

According to creative writing instructor Cathleen With, Calgary-native Shari-D Wilson will be at KPU near the end of January. The Banff Centre cites Wilson as an internationally acclaimed poet, artistic director, playwright, performer, filmmaker, educator and producer. Her seemingly endless resume reflects every hat on the coatrack. Wilson’s award-winning work has been heard, screened and read in acclaimed venues around the world. She currently has nine collections of poetry, the most recent being Open Letter: Woman Against Violence Against Women.

Wilson delivers with a soaring, wild type of style, her voice a sonorous, dramatic alto.

Judging from her website’s features, Wilson works mainly in three mediums: text, sound and video. When sifting through, perusers can find beautiful, brazen and bizarre content. The bizarre would include her video poem, Panty Portal, a visceral work that blends necrophilia and panty fetishes. Specifically coaxing the panty fetishes of dead men, more romantic than any mortal lover. The beautiful would include the poem (in-text) Crow Fusion, about a crow-woman’s demise. Another video poem, about being a spinster who hangs in trees, features an upbeat early 2000s R&B backbeat and instrumental.

Also, the scenes of the video poems frequently transition, to much amusement, like early 2000s music videos. It brings to mind the the ‘90s avant-garde band King Missile, that wrote a song about a man who lost his detachable penis—at a party, possibly—later to find it at a sidewalk-rug sale. As the music video goes, he bizarrely has to haggle for it (he wanted 22 bucks, but I talked him down to 17).

Wilson’s work can fit into this genre just fine.

Finally, her audio work is well-produced and varies in duration, which is an enjoyable nuance. Putting things aptly is an art akin to painting with a one-haired brush and a scrape of grey.