“this is a glowing, glorious, exuberant collection of hope.”

Kirby’s latest is the full-length debut poetry title This Is Where I Get Off (Toronto ON: Permanent Sleep Press, 2019), a collection of first-person lyrics bristling with energy, from grief to passion to wild exuberance and graphic enthusiasm. Kirby cribs, cradles and wrestles with their own history, writing passionately of living and loving, doing so openly and defiantly, even against climates that worked equally hard to deny their existence. There is such an openness to this collection, one that works to celebrate as much as acknowledge, working to record the stories of too many individuals lost over too many years. “My mother said that’s all they knew of homosexuals,” Kirby writes, early on in the poem “The Only Reason,” “that they were child / molesters and they killed themselves […]” And yet, for all the dark corners Kirby writes on, around and through, this is a glowing, glorious, exuberant collection of hope.

ROB MCLENNAN, A Halt Which Is Empty