The Last White House at the End of the Row of White Houses

By (author): Michael e. Casteels

The poems in The Last White House at the End of the Row of White Houses teem with delightful and confusing life, from workhorses and dinosaurs to wolves and kings. Alternately spare and lush, surreal and precise, these poems work their way under the skin to sing gorgeous songs to the heart.


Michael e. Casteels

Michael e. Casteels is the author of over a dozen chapbooks of poetry. In 2012, he was nominated for The Premier’s Awards for Excellence in the Arts, an emerging artist award. He lives in Kingston, where he runs Puddles of Sky Press.


“I absolutely loved Michael E. Casteels’ The Last White House At the End of the Row of White Houses, his first full-length book of poems. The collection is a wonderful blending of the strange and the ordinary, the mundane and the magical, and it was a pleasure to lose myself in Casteels’ surreal and dreamlike poetry… Funny and compelling, and imbued with empathy, Casteels’ collection definitely stood out for me this year.”—Megan Callahan, Vallum 2016 Year in Poetry

“Casteels mixes clinical detail of the day to day with an imagined reality that lives just beneath our skin and just beyond our grasp.  The result is a strangely familiar poetic that can be both consternating and comforting depending on whether Casteels is slamming on the brakes or hammering down on the gas.”—Today’s Book of Poetry

“[An] enchanting little collection.”—Bookgaga

“Reading Michael E Casteels’ 2016 book of poems, The Last White House at the End of the Row of White Houses, published by Invisible publishing out of Canada, is almost like reading a Spaghetti Western written by Haruki Murakami.”—Daniel E. Haislet, If You Asked Me About

“These are beautiful, strange and uplifting poems, set on the border between what is known, and what might be impossible.”—rob mclennan

“Surreal, off-the-wall, funny… they are also deep, thoughtful and edgy. We feel better about the apocalypse after reading them.”Kingston Whig-Standard

“Worlds of invention, humour, insight and the energy that is language. Michael e. Casteels’s first full-length collection is rich with empathy for robots and the sea, and the brilliant, delicate, outrageous leaps the mind makes when given words and our lives.”—Gary Barwin, Moon Baboon Canoe

“Have you seen Michael e. Casteel’s first full-length book of poems? It’s here, in front of your face. It begins with a wolf at the door and ends by waving farewell to our hands. Inside you’ll find everything you need: robots, a possum’s sneeze, and coffins filled with jelly donuts. The Last White House at the End of the Row of White Houses is one of the most exciting debuts to appear in Canadian poetry. Brilliant, strange, beautiful and encouraging, Casteel’s poetry is a repair kit for the human spirit.”—Jason Heroux, Hard Work Cheering Up Sad Machines

– Reviewers


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Excerpts & Samples ×

The Same Old Story

Once Upon a Time involves a horse. It involves

a heralding trumpet, a voice catapulting over palisades.

Once Upon a Time involves the last Tasmanian tiger

seeking refuge in a laundromat. It involves a punching bag

thrashing in its sleep. Once Upon a Time involves

purple loosestrife swashbuckling in the swale. It involves

the estuary ablitz with fledglings. Once Upon a Time

involves a pigeon and genie. It involves a goldfinch

made of gold, a world made of crumbs, a broom swooping

into the cellar. Once Upon a Time involves wild dogs

carousing among wildflowers. It involves the detective’s

hunch, the poltergeist in the cathedral. Once Upon a Time

involves a fox curled in its den by the meadow. It involves

a fox curled inside this fox’s womb. Once Upon a Time involves

an umbrella adrift at sea. It involves a bowling ball hurtling

through outer space, a Zamboni constellating into the zodiac.

Reader Reviews



80 Pages
7.0in * 4.75in * 0.1in


October 05, 2016



Book Subjects:

POETRY / Canadian



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