Checking In: With Jeff Blackman

Jeff Blackman has been around the lit scene for a good while, adding his good energy to it. He published Unit in 2016 with phafours press. That was after his impressive So Long as the People Are People (Apt 9 Press, 2013). Back in 2014 he was a feature at my salon series. Back in that decade-thereabouts-ago, he published a poem of mine while he edited Moose & Pussy (It was a spin-off of In/Words magazine that I still hope will be resurrected by CU students). In short he remains a poet to be followed.

[Photo Credit: Kate Maxfield]

PP: What’s life’s focus these days, literary or otherwise?

JB: I’m in the middle of extended parental leave with my 2nd child (pictured), but still have a couple creative projects on the go. I’m still publishing my bi-monthly zine, These Days. I just put out the 17th issue in July; it was all about the end of the world.

PP: Amazing. 17 issues already!

JB: Also in July…

[Photo Credit: Marilyn Irwin]

I launched the 2-for-1 Poetry Open Mic with my dear friend Bardia Sinaee. All are welcome to perform one poem they love and one they wrote. It happens the last Thursday of the month at the Happy Goat (35 Laurel), Ottawa.

We set out to do this in order to reconnect and grow the community after the last few years, and our first night exceeded our wildest expectations. We had 27 poets come out, and we cannot wait until we’re back on Thursday August 25. Follow @241openmic on Twitter or Instagram for updates.

PP: Where can people read more work of yours?

[The poem “Summer” from You Just Proved Poems Work]

JB: You Just Proved Poems Work is my latest collection on family and home. It was edited by my lifelong collaborator Justin Million. I was lucky to have chances to tour it both in-person and virtually. You can watch my performance for the Tree Reading Series  complete with voiceover and greenscreen effects engineered in my cellar.

PP: Any links to drop?

JB: Subscribe to These Days via Patreon (

PP: Super, thanks for those leads, Jeff. And for bringing such good energy into the community.