The Small Machine Talks – Episode 61 Experiment-O Readers– Part III

Welcome to the Small Machine Talks. I’m Amanda Earl and this is Episode 61 and our third and final for now episode featuring contributors to Experiment-O.

For this last episode on Experiment-O, I thought I would also talk a bit about some of the other work featured in the magazine by highlighting the work of one contributor per issue.

Issue 1 featured the poetry and collages of Camille Martin, who I subsequently interviewed for the AngelHousePress essay series in 2012. I met Camille at her Tree Reading Series reading in 2008 and enjoyed her poetry. I don’t remember how I found out abut her collage making.

5 of  Camille’s collages were published in the issue, along with her poetry. Camille’s collage-making comes in part from synaesthesia, her music background and her work with media such as photographs. One of the most striking collages in issue 1 for me was that of an illustration of a little girl placed on top of a moonscape across from a giant letter R, both the R and the girl are clothed in red/orange. in the essay Camille wrote, “I don’t usually follow rules or constraints when I’m making collages, though I do

sometimes limit the colour palette to give the whole more inner coherence. I try

various juxtapositions until I can feel a spark of attraction among the images, and

play with different uses of space to give that attraction free reign to show me

what it wants to say. It does often feel as though I’m a conduit who facilitates the

dramas that reveal themselves in the collages.”

Local photographer Caroline Gomersoll’s striking photos of open sky and other distorted scenes through broken glass excited me as soon as I saw them, and I asked for them for the second issue. There’s an otherworldly quality to them, one in particular shows glass dividing a murky alien-green background. There are stories in those photographs.

Issue 3 features a story by John Lavery entitled “Small Wonder.” He read the work or a version of it at Tree many years ago and then it was published in his second short story collection, “You, Kwaznievski, You Piss Me Off (ECW Press, 2004). I asked him if I could have it for Experiment-O and he agreed. I adored John and was a huge fan of his writing and of him. He played with language in a way that I’ve never experienced before, inventing hilarious onomatopoeic words, and indulging in extreme punnery. his range of knowledge was exceptional. He was skilled at everything he did, including music, having put out a CD entitled Dignity before he died in 2011. He kindly let me interview him for in 2010 for the 2011 issue and I also wrote an essay in the same issue about his linguistic pyrotechnics. I still miss him and I am very grateful that his work is part of Experiment-O.

For Issue 4, I invited Ottawa poet Jamie Bradley to curate the issue. He included the minimalist visual poetry of Hungarian artist Márton Kopánny. I love the restraint showed in this work and how much it communicates. Márton first sent me work for in 2010 and I’ve had the pleasure of publishing his work several times.

Issue 5’s highlight is the work of Gatineau artist michèle provost, which combines the craft of embroidery with text. I must have met michèle many years ago now. it was clear to me that we were kindreds and her work excited me because of her wild imagination, sense of humour and whimsy, and her energy. When we meet to have tea we can talk for hours. I consider a lot of the work that she has done as visual poetry, and I enjoy the way it dances the line between art and visual poetry.

Issue 5 also features the work of bill dimichele, American writer and artist who died last year. We must have swam in the same circles. He kindly invited me to submit work to his wonderful vispo blog, Tip of the Knife with its slogan, “Draw blood or go home.” He played in many different forms, was a delight to engage with. For this issue he gave me some dreamy experimental prose.

Carlyle Baker sent me work for issue 6, which I was very glad to publish. For these pieces he worked with rubbings, asemics, stencil, type and drawing implements to create free jazz, mixed code and other wondrous and imaginative visual poetry. I didn’t have the pleasure of meeting the Peterborough, Ontario artist until recently at an exhibit of visual poetry. He goes by many variations of Carlyle Baker and continues to make intriguing work.

For issue 7, I received an excerpt from a collaborative work by a. rawlings and Sachiko Murikami, two poets whose work I have admired for many years. I was pleased to publish their ecopoetic and sensual work.

I have long been intrigued with the work of Japanese illustrator, poet, photographer and collage artist hiromi suzuki. in 2019, AngelHousePress published her accomplished and beautiful chapbook, Andante. in issue 8 hiromi plays with shadows and light, distance and white space.

Sacha Archer was someone who I didn’t meet in person until a recent visual poetry exhibit in Toronto, but we’d been swimming in the same circles for years. I admire what he does with his press, Simulacrum Press and his own playful experiments with language, sound and motion. He is another kindred whimsical friend. For issue 9, he sent me an experimental text that uses the disruption of auto-correct as an engine. I like this man’s mind.

I read about Alberta artist Candace Makowichuk’s series of photographs of Edmonton cemeteries, many of which were printed in blue cenotype. The work is a study in mourning of death and the celebration of life. Here is an example where I had no connection to the artist and simply sent her an e-mail asking if I could publish her work in issue 10. I do this fairly often and for the most part, I receive affirmative responses. Artists are very generous with their work.

I think I saw some of German artist Ines Seidel’s powerful book alterations on FaceBook. I was so relieved when she agreed to let me have some for Experiment-O’s 11th issue. from her site: “books, news, objects, identities. all are in the process of transforming. what you see is just an intermediate state. word becomes matter. a linear sentence turns into tangible three dimensional form. a story disintegrates, spawns and transcends itself. stories are my material, transforming them is my task.”

Rasiqra Revulva is someone I first encountered only a few years ago. Was the first time at VERSeFest, Ottawa’s annual poetry festival or was it before? She does a lot of really out of the box creative things. For VERSeFest she read poetry using loops and sound effects to evoke an undersea atmosphere. Her reverse ekphrastics, visual poems and illustrations in issue 12 are yet another example of boundless creativity and imagination. I am a great admirer.

Issue 13 will be published in November/December. I’m not going to reveal all the contributors but I’ll give you just one name. I saw FFLEPP’s work in the latest issue of psw’s ToCall magazine, which is published in Germany using a mimeograph machine. I was thrilled by a piece that depicted notes tumbling to the bottom and sought more work by the artist, who has kindly agreed to let me publish some in the next issue.

Obviously I haven’t talked about the work of everyone in all 12 issues. I just wanted to give you the flavour of the magazine. Please visit for the full meal.

I say that Experiment-O celebrates the art of risk. I believe that everyone who contributes is taking a risk in some way: whether their work doesn’t fit into a mainstream genre, or they are writing about something personal that leaves them vulnerable, whether they are attempting to subvert a literary or artistic canon, or just playing for the sake of it. I appreciate every person who is willing to send their work for consideration to Experiment-O, and every contributor whose work is published. Sharing such work isn’t easy. I appreciate those of you who read the publication. I hope it inspires more play, more risk and more subversion of convention.

Our readers in this episode are Volodymyr Bilyk, Joel Chace, Marco Giovanele, Pearl Pirie, James Sanders, and Steve Venright

Volodymyr Bilyk is a poet from Ukraine who writes in English. So he’s basically from another dimension or Parts Unknown.

Long story short: he follows Ezra Pound’s ”Make It New” and considers Pink Fairies song ”Do It” to be quite adequate description of his artistic intentions.

The second edition of his poetry collection ”Roadrage” is available at Zimzalla (

Volodymyr was in issue 7 of Experiment-O.


The source text is the following:

pus sea seal eel elk! 

glumly daisy flavor – shadow fragile


pffft pffft XY? 4:16

La La La La Lo

ayu yu Tsuu A Xie Xie

(“paa”, “fuku”, “chiki”) 

No No No Ha! Ha! Ha! 

Blaze beep chug – tart rictus

– Ever-Roving Eye

jamais vu elk yowl 

Iko Iko – Nzznzzzznnznznnn

Fifi o – Uum Ni-Ni- Budub


Gash, Gloria: 

Ear Spin; Smile

Oww rrrrrrsssssstttttt O

It is not really a poem, rather a piece that was accumulated to showcase different dataset sampling combinations. some parts are missing because there were not enough samples available.  it is made out of tiny slices of sounds mixed together by an algorithm. sounds complicated but the hardest thing was to wait until the model is trained (2 hours per iteration times 5 over a week. 

Joel Chace has published work in print and electronic magazines such as, The Tip of the Knife, Counterexample Poetics, Eratio, Otoliths, Infinity’s Kitchen, and Jacket.  Most recent collections include Sharpsburg, from Cy Gist Press, Blake’s Tree, from Blue & Yellow Dog Press, Whole Cloth, from Avantacular Press, Red Power, from Quarter After Press, Kansoz, from Knives, Forks, and Spoons Press, Web Too, from Tonerworks, War, and After, from BlazeVOX [books], Scorpions, from Unlikely Books, Humors, from Paloma Press, and Threnodies, from Moria Books. Joel was in issue 9 of Experiment-O.

RECORDING 2: Joel Chace


s t o n e s

when the letters are stones

dragged placed abandoned

s n o w

when the letters are snow

packed curved left

y e l l o w c h a l k

when the letters are yellow chalk

up on the blackboard

g r e e n g r a s s

when the letters are green grass

woven placed in shade

b a t

when it brushes arm-hair

in the cave’s deepest black

g a s h

when the glass-slivers

bubble up from the trench of blood

no matter

is this right then    we put

all our ducks in a row    all

our ducks of the under-word    all made

of quarks    which are or are

not matter but certainly are not

meaning    though the ducks

mean    as we line

the ducks up they make

a surface    a surface of

water    surface and water that

are not do not matter but

do mean    the matter then

cannot mean    the meaning is

nothing but    we keep

on lining up the ducks    beneath

the surface of water

is depth the more ducks the more

depth    and dark    and

murk    all of which is no

matter    no matter    not matter    but is

dark murk and deep    story

layered upon story    stories without

matter but with meaning    how

is it possible to live like

this    to make stories that

mean    but are no matter

Marco Giovenale (alias differx) lives in Rome, where he works as an editor and translator, also teaching History of Italian poetry and experimental writing in a poetry center he contributed to establish. He’s founder and editor of (on line since 2006) and (since 2011). Linear texts in English in the books “A gunless tea” (Dusie, 2007), “CDK” (Tir-Aux-Pigeons, 2009), “anachromisms” (Ahsahta Press, 2014), “white while” (Gauss PDF, 2014: He’s also an asemic writer. His (main) site is Marco was in issue 4.

RECORDING 3: Marco Giovenale

Three fragments from $TRING$

 $ 01

Here it was
I wanted it to be well understood
The old traveller said
To the young waitress
If only I was twenty
Was seventy
Was carrying in a heap of forks
Forks are good to travellers
Typed am
Mad @ you
Since it’s in one’s dna to decide not to show that much of one’s anger
The garden was so bright
Silence I presume did not drip down from the sun
It’s cold as it rains
She wears a depressing shadow
Under her red led cloak
Loops of time revolve
They invented it yesterday
She doesn’t find the clue

$ 03

My fingers I took a look at them
While typing
Well I felt a gap in time
So they didn’t seem to me like actually belonging
To me
There’s something weird or a pure delay
All around
I thought it was the shiny screen
One must always find a cause

$ 04

Must unravel it
It’s all on my side
Begging something
Always fix the issues
That occur
The boomerang question time
The hits of the day
Stay tuned pray
The joy
Will last forever

Pearl Pirie’s fourth collection, footlights, comes in the fall 2020 from Radiant Press. Her newest chapbook is Not Quite Dawn(Éditions des petits nuages, March, 2020). Her epistle haibun chapbook, Water loves its bridges: Letters to the dead, is due out in Dec 2020 from The Alfred Gustav Press by subscription.

Pearl was in issue 1 of Experiment-O



we measure life by millimetres 

or by feelings of fullness, or is that dullness, 

or satisfaction 

a stillness as contentment 

or a shutdown 

overloaded by information or calories or energy depletion

walking the forest trail, turning onto Sara’s trail

i had nunca vu

years wiped away

no sense of north or known

I bet if the trees were text

I’d find them and their leaf galls illegible

I’ve been stranded before

struck illiterate for hours, orphaned by memory.

so, senses can get overwhelmed

not only by crowds, lights, ambient 80dB

but by fatigue 

from sustained concentration

by a focus I thought I could never regain

but did

yesterday’s sleep 

didn’t restock me

inside my braincase are early COVID aisles of neurons

like East German grocers 

the demand to think comes at no steady rate

so you can predict when to replace. 

that complicates. spurts the supply chain 

of energies.

I’m bottlenecked

with a surfeit of words then none.

but it’s not my job alone

the red squirrel has many words for me.

he bounces his back legs

then vibrates to his front, goes out on a literal

limb, uses his weight to cantilever a shake

while jays pretend to be innocuous, indifferent.

5 of them around me toss leaves

looking for food but i heard them call others.

I’m the talk of the not-town.

the woodpecker comes to see.  

the chipmunk scolds too,

their words have regrounded me.

them and the ant who insists on my leg

as a log, as a bridge.

James Sanders is a member of the Atlanta Poets Group, a writing and performing collective ( He was included in the 2016 BAX: Best American Experimental Writing anthology. His most recent book, Self-Portrait in Plants, was published in 2015. The University of New Orleans Press also recently published the group’s An Atlanta Poets Group Anthology: The Lattice Inside. James is reading from a visual poem that appeared in Experiment-O issue 11.


Steve Venright is a visual artist and poet whose publications include Straunge Wunder (Tortoiseshell & Black), Spiral Agitator (Coach House Books, 2000), Floors of Enduring Beauty (Mansfield Press, 2007), and The Least You Can Do Is Be Magnificent: Selected & New Writings (Feed Dog imprint of Anvil Press, 2017). Through his Torpor Vigil Records label, he has released several albums by singer-composer Samuel Andreyev and sleeptalker Dion McGregor.

Twitter: @stevevenright

Instagram: steve_venright

Torpor Vigil Records

Twitter: @torporvigil

Instagram: torporvigilart

Steve was in our first issue.


An excerpt from “Manta Ray Jack and the Crew of the Spooner” from The Least You Can Do Is Be Magnificent: Selected and New Writings (A Feed Dog Book from Anvil Press, 2017)

Just then the keeper of the tower—a Mr. Albert Ross—flew in, soaked from the fetid weather and looking much like a tattered bird with wetted feather.

            He was back from the abode of his cousin Drew who was billeting a dozen crew from a ship which had (soon after it was boarded) sunk and with whom our lighthouse codger, as kitehouse lodger, was forced to share a sordid bunk—in company with a creaky old loser they’d found waving a gun around at Crappers’ Tavern shortly after their leaky old cruiser had run aground at Trappers’ Cavern.

            It was to that same tavern that Mr. Ross had repaired, after one last kite nap, for one last nightcap before heading home to his luminous spire. But a single nightcap is such a scrawny bore, and before long the “one” had become a brawny score. The Crappers’ bartender[barmaid {though I wouldn’t like the repetition, as it appears later in the paragraph}]—a spuminous liar but a frisky wench—poured out her hearts to him (she claimed to have been born with a pair) along with glass after glass of whisky (French). Inspired by the Abyssinian barmaid’s ruminating lies (e.g., having once made porn with a bear) as well as the luminating ryes (which she mixed with salt water and called “sailor tea”), he took a perky quill and some sort of quirky pill then made like Samuel Taylor C— a man whose poetic notions, induced by noetic potions, were realized by scribbling while dreaming.

            But barely had his scribbling and dreaming begun when it was interrupted by the untimely intrusion of a wandering Porlock wimp whose sudden and startling appearance—he was dressed rather in the style of a warlock pimp—set the old lighthouse keeper to dribbling and screaming.

            This boisterous oozing drew the attention of two daring shrinks who’d been sharing drinks and now invited him to join their oysterous boozing. (While the duo was acclaimed for treating individuals who experienced shame while fornicating, they had also attained a degree of fame while shucking.) By the time our Mr. Ross, eyes glazed as a dead hawk’s, took his leave of the two head[-]docs, the battered shells of clamorous oysters lay all about him like the shattered bells of amorous cloisters.

            Now back atop his familiar perch, with a belly full of oysterous regret, he burst through the lighthouse door like a roisterous egret.

Thanks to all the readers from this episode and from the previous two Experiment-O episodes. Thanks to Charles for processing and Jennifer Pederson for the intro and outro, and thanks to you for listening and sharing the podcast. Stay tuned for season 5 which begins in July!