Torontoist Reads: Emily Schultz's Dancing Chickens
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Torontoist Reads: Emily Schultz’s Dancing Chickens

2007_03_15emilyschultz.jpgYou still have a few hours left, but Torontoist’s Poetry Contest closes tonight! At the beginning of the new year, Torontoist launched a poetry contest to encourage the penning of new poems about our fair city. After judges Carly Beath, Stephen Cain, and Jay MillAr deliberate, we’ll announce the winner plus five honourable mentions on April 10.
We hope you’ve enjoyed our series of previously published Toronto poems, and look forward to presenting the winning entries. Thanks very much to all who entered poems, to the poets who shared poems on Torontoist, and to the contest’s sponsors: ECW Press, Coach House Books, Junction Books, and The Mercury Press.

Our fourth poem, “Riot at the Dollarama” is from the forthcoming first book of poetry, Songs for the Dancing Chicken (ECW Press), by Toronto writer Emily Schultz. If you like your literature with Toronto locations, then you might want to investigate this collection for its many local references.
In Songs for the Dancing Chicken, the films and life of director Werner Herzog (Fitzcarraldo, Stroszek and Nosferatu) are used as jumping off points for investigations into everyday life. The book will be launched with a discussion of the filmmaker (with Jason Anderson) at This Is Not A Reading Series on March 27 28 (Gladstone Hotel Ballroom, 1214 Queen Street West).
Emily’s previous work includes a video game novel, Joyland (ECW Press), and a short story collection, Black Coffee Night (Insomniac Press). She edited the anthology, Outskirts: Women Writing from Small Places, and has been editor of both Broken Pencil and This Magazine. And just because we know you’re wondering: Emily’s favourite neighbourhood dollar store is Budget Super Savings Discount in Parkdale.

Photo of Emily Schultz by Brian Joseph Davis.

Read Emily Schultz’s “Riot at the Dollarama” after the break.

Riot at the Dollarama
There is a blood clot made of humans
in the long white aisle,
tremulous fluorescents and mellifluous
stink of cranberry votives, orange
knock-off Mr. Clean. Hand-gripped silver
baskets bumper-car semi-accidentally
into hips. There are no limits here,
not like at the Price Chopper.
Right now, the hot item
is skin cream, an herbal-silk fountain
retailing for eight dollars at Guardian Drugs.
No one can say for sure
if it will really stall your leg hairs’ growth,
but there is a seven-dollar savings
and that is enough.