Episode 29 – Interview with Jennifer LoveGrove

Episode 29 – The Small Machine Talks (and Walks!) – Interview with Jennifer LoveGrove

Recorded on February 28, 2018

Click here to listen to the episode.

This is the first in what I hope to be a series of interviews with poets in the wild, or at least, in various locations downtown where we can discuss their poetry and other interests. Whether you’re a visiting or local poet, if you’d like to take part in an interview, please let us know. I envisage tea and a walk through Chinatown or along the path en route to the Parliament Buildings or a pub crawl on Elgin or perhaps an interview whilst riding the new light rail, once it opens in late 2018.

  1. Art House Café, 555 Somerset W.

Jennifer and I began in the Art House Café., a café full of beautiful art and interesting furniture. It was the ideal location to begin our interview. There was lots of background noise as fellow café enthusiasts chatted beside us.

We talked about her most recent poetry collection, Beautiful Children with Pet Foxes (BookThug, 2017) and her reading at the Tree Reading Series on February 27. We discussed the need to prepare for a reading ahead of time. Jennifer said that rather than try to gauge the vibe in the room, you create the vibe. We discussed the roles of ghosts and animals within the book, Jennifer’s interest in the occult as a child. Jennifer mentioned how the South Korean poet Kim Hyesoon influences her poetry.

We also chatted about her former zine, Dig, published by Jennifer’s press, Wayward Armadillo. We spotted an issue of local magazine Canthius on the shelf at Art House.



A How-To Guide on Reading Your Poetry: http://open-book.ca/Writer-in-Residence/Archives/Jennifer-LoveGrove/A-How-To-Guide-for-Your-Poetry-Reading

Richard Ahnert – cover artist for Beautiful Children with Pet Foxes:


Kim Hyesoon – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kim_Hyesoon

The Lazarus Corporation Text Mixing Desk 2.0:


  1. Darling Vintage, 502 Somerset W. – 30.00

We moved to Darling Vintage across the street and talked to the owner about the odd questions people have about the store. We encountered animals from Jennifer’s book as jewelry, on glassware and on clothing. We gave a running audio narrative of the lovely garments and other items in the store. We talked about buying second hand clothing, sweat shop culture and upcylcled clothing. We get serious about purses and admire the clothing clustered by colour. Amanda commits some terrible puns. Opening drawers results in surprises. We consider clothing to alienate our fellow train travellers. We learn that Jennifer’s dog is afraid of things that flutter.  Jamie, the owner of Darling Vintage gives us a list of silly questions people ask about the store.



Jennifer LoveGrove Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jenlg52/

Jennifer talks about her subscription to Red Bird Vintage Box http://www.redbirdvintagebox.com/ which provides customized vintage jewelry and clothing monthly.

  1. Bellwether’s Vintage, 9 Florence Street 51.28

In Bellwethers’ Vintage on Florence we ran into the poet and burlesque performer Kimberly Dawkins.



We talked about the thrift shop culture in Montreal, Jennifer’s log cabin home, south of Peterborough where some of the editing for the book occurred,  and gave a running commentary on the items in the store, including an etch-a-sketch and some funky American red and blue star pants. We talked about the resurgence of the polka dot and our lack of desire for vintage bathing suits. We complained of our inability to sew. We discussed the delicious scent of a wood-burning stove or campfire and that reminded Amanda of Lapsang Souchong tea:


Amanda tries to remember the Pixies song, Greens and Blues


  1. Ragtime Vintage, 43 Flora St.


We went to Ragtime on Flora but ran out of space on the portable recorder to record the interview.

Thanks to Jennifer for indulging my whimsical idea and for being a great guest. It was a pleasure to spend time with her and have a whimsical discussion. Let’s hope we have more of these moveable podcast episodes.

Stay tuned for the next episode of the Small Machine Talks. Thanks to listeners and those who share the episode links. Thanks to Charles Earl for sound engineering and Jennifer Pederson for the intro and outro.