the poetry that matters

David UU

David UU (pronounced David W.), or David W. Harris (1948-1994), is considered an accomplished concrete and experimental poet and an important small press publisher. Along with bill bissett and bpNichol, he was a pioneer of the concrete-poetry movement in Canada, and perhaps the first Canadian poet to explore visual collage embodying literary, philosophical and language references. He also composed sound works (both musical & textual), made 8mm short films, was a master collagist/montagist and performed in numerous performance art exhibitions.

He was a prolific publisher and encouraged the talents of many Canadian writers early in their careers. He founded and operated Fleye Press (1966-70), Divine Order of the Lodge (1971-1975), Derwyddon Press (1976-81), Silver Birch Press (1987-94) as well as several magazines and numerous imprints for pamphlets, broadsides, postcards and other ephemera. In 1967, he co-founded grOnk with bpNichol and others.

David W. Harris was born on June 13, 1948, in Barrie, Ontario. The family moved to Collingwood in 1958, where he lived until setting out on his own and moving to Toronto in 1966. He left Toronto for Vancouver in 1968 and over the next decade relocated between Ontario and the west coast several times. He adopted the pseudonym David UU around 1970. In 1980 he settled in NorthVancouver where he lived until finally moving to a farmhouse near Delhi, Ont. in 1992 where he died in May, 1994.

(for more information on David UU, see the David UU Special Feature )



what we are to find . these moments those of some

vision cared for much less . patter grab the heart .

sizzling making these trays . rays . mays sunlit .

bound the reefs shake the sift . a long time . along .

bringing in the biggest . shine for the opening .

destination deny try stops .


price of actual . shades harmony taking breath .

fill the open cross dangerously take . breaking .

walled . & further past . & further . & section .


big bright amused . fused gracing . fought in the

ray sun . groping . fast . masterful . wiped onto

center meek . sake sake sake sake sake . brought

simply & forthly marching . signing singing flashing

fasting degreed . boundary . bounding flinging

signing singing . boundary . boundary .


take over nowing the light . direction . dissection .

losing blend later licence . my saint over well .

taught most blinking . paragraph . paraphrased .

intention . in mentiond outboard . crazed misgotten .

lock lock the fence. driven from .


beast from the bold got held & fell notion . this

simpling from gotten over scratching the final

wides the train . on the four on the four .







liking in living. Is there liking in liking living.

Is there liking in liking living living. Is there

living. Bells ringing. In ing ing. Ring.


The sun is in taping. Static radio. Is love presents.

Love present. No pretence. No louder. No louder

than to talk. It is to die. Inside words. Lies. Sun

be nothing else. Be else to not be sun. Be sun.


Rock the boulder to slumber. Breathing moves night

darkness. Breathing which moves night & darkness

is you breathing. You breathing moves night darkness.

Strawberries & other sleeping is breathing in night

darkness. Prayers are sometimes grant us. Do grant

us. Do grant us living. Do grant us liking living. Do

grant us well. Breath. Breathing.


Now is the time. Floating seas the past. 73 bernard

avenue an inlet. Hello i dont know you youre not the

same as yesterday. No. To be sick in our bathroom.

The towels are free. Coffee. Plastic cups do melt

from heat. I told you. Please believe me once.


I smashed a bottle against the wall above the chair.

Later queens park. I couldnt face anything. Drive

around. Yes you were right. I think ill tell her.

Tell her. I cant. Its 3 oclock in the morning she

isnt back yet. Tomorrow. Take the subway. Home

in 10 minutes. Have lunch. Still not here. Back

underground. She did & finally we left together from

eachother. Late summer in the city. A new address

soon to be lost.


Batman & robin in a gloryhole scene. Flash. Later

coming in your mouth. You did not. I got what i

wanted. Do we really. You couldnt swallow. What

can we. The drapes closed the door open the balcony.

City sounds i will be leaving soon. You wont be

coming she is far away no one will be coming i am

alone again. It is where it was.


Where it was once i was a hero. I did tell lies.

Her & me. I am no longer a hero not even in dreams.

I still do dream but cant believe them. The sea is

too much a mirror. I am now always with the mirror.

I am now always trying to believe dreams & people.

I am now always. Get me out. There are drums. The

beat goes on. I am me you. Love power stations. It

was never said. Please. Headlines announce. David

was a king. He is now dead. David was a jew. He is

now dead. That is history.




The Last Slice: 2 days before



once you got up but i pushd it this floor glazed the

melting have you ever she summoned the new hostess

dressed in screen bought that with more than was ever

the blue barrel lifting double wrapped she cried but

the players went on a pace to place further riches

markd out no erasure in this one bless out of order




if its what you way then run over the nearest clear

the stake it should flow but action who took the

moment another on this he is serious




more into the point that got passd the board this

hearing is not adjournd all holds 2 be checkd at

the foremost slight falling behind i crashd our

motion isnt mated the bottle range at the door

sure the fire wont be sitting must




what the security didnt see revisions in the step.

or dotted mill mine tenderly all this she stoppd

the train welld wide under the sharpened a gliding

shore might always




see if mines closely ever sinking fifth place hear

the relate cast swimming in the bells feel softer

rising full the below


later in the old barn

the sun did test the

table but this act has






a saturday nite . sunday morning . the film over .

so is the late movie on television . & you . its warm .

it might as well be spring . the fast forward isnt

working . i feel far away from home . and everything .

ive yet to lite the candle . a christmas present . your

presence . absent . missing you all the while . so

little time . so much time . my fathers eyes . the

blood . my blood dripping to the floor . watching

from the window . i was 3 years old . i became

alone . i became my father . his eyes . his smile .

said my mother . her memory is only recent to

me . i have my own world . autumn in toronto . dear

judy . dead leaves being taken away by the city . a

morning . and an evening . another beginning . an

end . a continuing motion . today . let me smile for

you . prelude to a kiss . music . i . you . let me be

your . there is a pain to carry . i can talk about it .

this is such a dark morning . a day . a movement .

gestures . touch me . i want to be touched . the

floor is worn by traffic . people do destroy . the

heater is off . san francisco . toronto . vancouver .

london . hamilton . kitchener . vienna . paris .

milan . the outlands . inside . out . enter. yield .

so much highway . roads . trails . a path for our

feet . we travel . motion . music . a past . the

present. today . begin . end . a movement . a

sign . a waiting . be love . dear love . dear one .

a song .


there is much to be in waiting . try not to find

anything . she said . she said . i know . you dont

know . i know . it is the final end . like a final

beginning . you know . you dont . what is real .

be real . this is real . that was a real experience .

toronto 1967 . they didnt know . real lies . we fool

ourselves . the past . this present . i love . i .

you . love . thats french . you speak french . that

is a question . a patch . truth . true . love . life .

two . one . arithmetic . impossible. it was . i

love you . that is a good ending . waiting . coming .

a song .


measure it . a meaning . relevant . relation . ships .

sea . stones . the river . the television is off . it is

quiet . sunday morning . sunday . the past . our

present . lets go to bed now . a finding . a beginning .

a motion . singing . open windows . touch . a song .

be present . past . the marchers . toronto . vancouver .

cities . people . home . be sum . a memory . a word .

a gesture . hurt . response . love . a song .




the great ship smiled out the harbour into the

storm at sea the wind sure does blow said the

galley slave calling for another load & the

great ship did sail on rising upon the ocean



if you think this

is a free trip

get off


the captain who rarely sailed fell thru his

sailors glass when he saw his escape meanwhile

the crew always on mutiny lined up in full

attention but the captain had lost his eyes

for this ship & continued the watch


in shadow the

form moves within

touch the hand

finds the

eyes breath


the captain slowly turned & looked hard at his

ship for the last time & throwing the sailors

glass to the first mate said it's all yours &

swam out to sea as the ship sank with the

mutinous crew


time passes from the

mountain to the

valley heat

brings us



the dream lost in


eyes turn the

hand reaches to

the present




Canal Dreams: simulated wormhole


rabbits food confess died trying yu take

that to yur cabin nd see sumthing like

this bar drawn spirits sever say shiver

if yu know yull never take them to rest

biting sunshine there are the magic we

outside the food bubbl take them home

wake up in six orleans yu track down

up the tasted summer surprise yu to the

park sea shore sun ride what of they

say but in maybe maybe on the outside

calld back falling nd back the place

nd love all upon this yu last breath

falling nd to this again nd to this

back now ocean west another inner

shes its cumming to where yu sure

once we get to the house papa knows

what to do with the bones







the golden aether cloud matter rising the jewels of

the dawn in this place the seed is planted and oaken

forests singing the unicorn dances in the mist      yur

being in radiance this vision of the hosts of heavenly

glory black silver if to touch would heal halo of

pure holy anointed by the cosmos and the song gloria

gloria my love for yu gentl of blood and sun sparkls

of moon the earthly warmth to flow she is me yu are

to my dreams of higher places breathe distant voices

thru all shadows i love yu full









wonder falls and sinking into the foremost sunset

it is fast gone and always listening to forces that

besiege i am beyond the old fallen graves that are

home and not to be subsided being my sword to the

forward singing glow this i name altamber flaming

in yur eyes and for all sons of this glory come

and behold


near the golden fruit lies a woman clad in white

shimmering of all worlds there is wonder in capture

of her heavenly amazement i arose and walked towards


of what is behind the suns eye and i appear to that

place beyond yur vision



two concrete poems

Bookmark and Share