Domenico Capilongo has lived in Toronto, Vancouver, Swift Current, Italy and Japan. He has found his way back to Toronto where he teaches creative writing and karate. His award-winning poems have appeared in several national and international literary magazines, as well as in anthologies. His work has been shortlisted for the F.G. Bressani Literary Prize, and long-listed for the ReLit Award. His poetry explores identity, culture, relationships, music, and technology, through both lyrical and experimental styles. He is influenced by writers who play with language and imagery, a technique that not only leaves the reader examining their connection to the world around them, but also makes them think about the craft of writing itself.
In high school I loved to read poetry secretly in the library. I had such a private and personal connection to poems. I felt like they expressed how I felt and I was amazed at what language could do. I remember studying William Carlos Williams' poem, “The Red Wheelbarrow”, and being mesmerized by its simplicity and ever-changing meaning.
I wrote poetry as a teenager and into my first year of university. I felt very private about my work at first, and wasn’t ready to share it. I'm glad, however, that I took this time to explore and develop my voice. I eventually took the plunge as a serious poet when I started taking creative writing courses in university and then even more, much later, when I began to have my work published in literary magazines.
I think a poet's job is to remind us of the power and magic that language has to make us feel and connect with each other in the most unique of ways. Reading, writing, listening to, and sharing poems is one of the most wonderful things we can do together.
There are so many incredible poems I would love to memorize and perform. Here are my top three: Michael Ondaatje's “Sweet Like a Crow” because it's so fun and visual, Susan Holbrook’s “What Is Poetry” because it says it all so well, and bill bissett’s “dont worry yr hair” because it’s full of magical meditation.