From an unpublished essay by Steve McCaffery:
"Emerging in the mid-sixties Canadian concrete poetry is best configured within a wider, international poetics of cultural unrest, expressed by many younger writers in a plurality of unorthodox literary forms around the world. More specifically, however, it arose out of a specific cultural need. A dominant, inward-looking, mythopoetic and largely nationalist aesthetic (expressed at its belligerent and stentorian in the prose of Robin Mathews) had been challenged in Vancouver by Tish, a young group of poets, founded in 1961 and largely gathered around ex-patriot American critic Warren Tallman. Embracing the new American physiologically-based poetics of projective verse, the Tish group offered a radical alternative to Canadian mainstream poetry: the pre-eminence of breath and the syllable in guiding poetic construction, the poem considered both as an open field and a high energy construct proved appealing to a younger generation of west coast Canadian poets. It was this initial ground-breaking intervention that facilitated the intervention of Canadian concrete-visual poetic practice and its articulation onto the wider, international movement to which Concrete Poetry aspired."
The collection is sold.