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The Hellmouths of Bewdley

Tony Burgess

192 pages
Ecw Press
In The Hellmouths of Bewdley there are always some murdered men and some gay men. A baby man, a sexy man, and a drunk man. An insane doctor. A wonderful doctor. Twenty guys named Jesus. Men who wonder about women and women who don’t care. A lot of dogs: some of them supernatural. More drunk and dead men. A number of cranes, no herons. A real ninja turtle. A jail, a detox, a fire, and a suicide or two. An agoraphobic with crabs, a bunny messiah, women in ages, some children, and drugs and fried chicken. A very small town. Like sixteen medieval B-movies, The Hellmouths of Bewdley is a series of stories hiding in a novel about a small town in Ontario’s cottage country. Tony Burgess’s first book is a halfway house for literary delinquents; electro-shock therapy for a storyteller who is grateful for the looters’ paradise of post-modern distraction. Burgess believes there is a shape that fact and fiction both seek, that narratives occur in defiance of the things they harbour. In The Hellmouths of Bewdley nightmares are our babysitters: they tell bedtime stories to normal, happy children while their parents destroy their lives or pass out, dead to the world, in front of the TV.
Author Bio
Tony Burgess lives in Toronto where he was born. He has also lived periodically on the streets in most cities in Canada, and has survived frequent detainment in hospitals, jails, and detoxes. Tending to lead several lives at once, he has also done volunteer work for many of the same institutions. He has studied graphic arts at community college and painting at the studio school “Artssake,” exhibiting and selling his work in stories and galleries on Queen Street in the early eighties. He was also part of several bands that operated out of the Beverly Tavern, culminating in the situationist cowboy experiment — The Ether Brothers. Using the name Tony Blue, he was a waiter, occasional MC, and poet, who opened for rock bands, and performed at the early festivals that would become Elvis Mondays. These performances took place almost weekly over a period of time from the late seventies into the mid-eighties. None of the thousands of pages written specifically for the events survived longer than a few hours. People who were there, however, can probably recall the harrowing nights they shared with this surprising writer. As well as working as a telephone psychic, he is a writer of literary criticism, fiction, screenplays, drama, poetry, and music reviews.