It was their intention to present things in their thinginess….

—J.C. Ransom, on the Imagists



But if you could isolate

the thinginess

from its thing

the distillate

would be as abstract

as the slapback echo

of just-plucked strings

in the King’s Ur-recordings

for Sun Studios,

or the pushback

of a Coke can

before it gives

way to your compacting grip.

Thinginess is the width

times length times height

that boosts babies up

to the eye-lines

of grownups at dinner.

It’s the doorstopper-

ability of phonebooks,

the necessary tubing

that defines

the nothing blowing

thru ducts.

It’s the word “through”

spelled with “u.”

It’s all such

pure products.


Jason Guriel (Canada, 1978 -), from Pure Product. Montréal, Québec: Véhicule Press, 2009


To buy the book:



RPO (Representative Poetry Online) is a project and archive by University of Toronto Libraries – you can browse poets and poems with multiple search criteria, including map.


Cover image: Douglas Coupland, Tsunami Chest, 2013 (Plywood, steel, Japanese tsunami debris harvested from the north coast beaches of Haida Gwaii – 110.5 x 197.5 x 62.9 cm), courtesy Daniel Faria Art Gallery.

To discover more artworks of this writer:

To learn about Douglas Coupland:


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