McCann’s third poetry collection arrives in May 2017

September 17, 2016

Some news. The folks over at Invisible Publishing will be putting out a new collection of poems of mine in the spring of 2017. Shut Up Slow Down Let Go Breathe (not to be confused with the 2015 chapbook of the same name) was a weirdly intense five-year project. I’ll have more to say about this soon, but for now, I’m just feeling the squee of excitement.

Also, big thanks to Rannie Turingan who shot a new author photo for the book catalogue. He took so many interesting photos – maybe I’ll have more to say about that later too.


“Patience, honey. Air will send / live updates.” Like much of Marcus McCann’s work, Shut Up Slow Down Let Go Breathe (Invisible Publishing, 2017) takes as its ostensible object the disposable, the fleeting and the seemingly unimportant. The poems may be about smartphone weather apps and farting in bed, but they are also about how we respond to anxiety, overwork and overstimulation.

Shut Up Slow Down Let Go Breathe showcases McCann’s technical toolkit: speed, sonic resonance, and wordplay. McCann continues his commitment to writing about sex, but perhaps for the first time, the poems have — could it be? — a romantic edge. McCann invites his readers to be his “bandmates / on life’s slutty bus tour.” The collection hums along with humour and heart are at the forefront — a risky turn for McCann, one that pays dividends for his readers.

Praise for his earlier work:

“Not a syllable is wasted; rather than teach an austerity of pleasure, it encourages luxuriating and loitering in the back alleys of his poems.” –Daniel Allen Cox on The Hard Return, Plenitude

“Marcus McCann’s The Hard Return is a musical, sensual delight, a plurality of voices both human and instrumental.” –Vanessa Herman, The Malahat Review

“Each publication by McCann is perfectly rendered so there’s not an ill-considered rhythm or word or syllable and going places that are interesting for journey and destination.” –Pearl Pirie, Page Half Full

“Labradoodle contains many instantly classic, write-on-the-wall, one-liners that are best preserved in the hilarious logic of McCann’s full verse and not necessarily in McGimpsey’s shadow. All killer, no filler.” -Ryan Pratt, the Ottawa Poetry Newsletter.

“The density of McCann’s lines are incredibly packed, and move at lightspeed, nearly light-headedly so.” –rob mclennan on The Hard Return

“McCann writes tightly structured poems that heave and push against the restraints, brimming with musicality, unexpected images and plenty of humour.  He also knows how to put a trope to work.” –Rob Thomas at apt613

“Poetry is too often predictable. This book is not.” -Billeh Nickerson on The Hard Return, Xtra

“From the startling metaphoric seize of the opening, the lines propel themselves fill throttle, through sonic reverberations and imaginitive mimesis.” -Stephanie Bolster, John Newlove Award citation

“This stunning book explores the possibilities of bringing image to life, written in the language of the people and soaked in a heart of sapphire. The jury was intoxicated with this book.” -Gerald Lampert Memorial Award jury citation for Soft Where

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