The Tenderman’s Primer

See the salmon run. See them die.
Pierce their gills with a pick.
This is Level 1.
You are ready for work.

Now see the salmon go extinct.
No blood, no slime on the deck
or caked on the sides of your boots.
No sockeye, coho or pink.

You have advanced to the highest level.
Smallpox squirms on the river blanket.
See the past. Keep it alive
as long as you have breath.

You are ready for death.

~ Tim Bowling 

Congratulations to Tim on being short-listed for the 2012 Alberta Literary Award, the Stephan G. Stephansson Award for Poetry.

Tim Bowling is the author of ten poetry collections, four novels, and two works of non fiction. The winner of a Guggenheim fellowship, a Canadian Authors Association Award, and four Alberta book Awards, he has also been nominated twice for the Governor General’s Award. His most recent books are Tenderman (poetry) and The Tinsmith (a novel). He lives with his family in Edmonton.

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