Jason Heroux’s new collection of poetry, Natural Capital, shows that surrealism is alive and well in Kingston today.
Started in France more than a century ago, Surrealism is marked by surprise, unexpected juxtapositions and non sequiturs, which pretty much describes the poems in Natural Capital. Jason calls what he writes “the surrealism of the everyday – nothing too strange, just a slight little tilt to keep you off balance.”
Jason always knew he wanted to be a writer, even as a teenager growing up in Lasalle, Quebec. He moved to Kingston to attend Queen’s where he earned an undergraduate degree in English and Psychology. He has never taken a creative writing course: his poetry teachers have been a worldwide, borderless academy of poets who like to poke in the dark, crazy corners of life.
Jason started out publishing his poems in small zines, one of them in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania. A Belgian poet/translator/publisher stumbled on them, liked their tone and style, and translated and published them.
Natural Capital is Jason’s third collection, following Emergency Hallelujah and Memoirs of an Alias. All three are published by Mansfield Press.
“I don’t know anyone in this country who is doing this kind of work, writing this very quietly explosive surrealism,” says Stuart Ross, his editor at Mansfield.
After university, Jason and his wife, Soheir Jamani, ran a Kingston laundromat for five years, which became the inspiration for his novella, Good Evening, Central Laundromat.
Jason now works for Service Ontario and lives in Kingston, Ontario. His work has appeared in chapbooks, anthologies and magazines in Canada, the United States, Belgium, France, and Italy.