Concetta Principe

Concetta Principe is a poet and fiction writer with an emphasis on exploring the hybrid genre prose-poetry.

A Brief Gun Unregistry,” written by Concetta Principe, was published in The Puritan Issue 31. Here she discusses how she wrote it.

This poem is from a collection in-progress that I’ve titled, The Hole World.

This collection started with me thinking about dreams as rabbit holes, inspired by a childhood dream in which I encountered a white brilliant light in the basement of my grade school. That was the first poem. Then I thought about the places where holes exist in the landscape apart from basements in schools: windows, doors, and rooms in homes. Outside there are ditches, caves, manholes covering subterranean tunnels, and even subways. In the sky there are holes in the clouds and in the ozone.

Then I thought about holes as an empty signifier: the hole we feel inside when something has gone; the hole of absence of lack, loss, or emptiness; the hole of bad things like losing love, memories, or sustenance. The mind is a sieve, and the heart and the body. I want to write a poem about sieves.

Then I thought about the hole as something made for something to fit into it: fitting and not fitting. I thought about pigeons that have their holes and how words pigeon-hole people and make them fit an illusion. Words are holes of violence and that violence has an effect on the one being “holed”: the hole of race, racism, and hate.

The Hole as Violence


“A Brief Gun Unregistry” came about through thinking about the hole a gun makes when killing. The poem aims, with all the ambivalence that is implied, to be accountable to the violence of racism, sexism, and all isms, in representing this violence from the perspective of the executioner with a gun. So, if this poem represents the violence of holing via the one making holes, it hopes to weaken that violence by seeing through these holes.


Trayvon Martin
—February 26, 2012 – Sanford, Florida

Michael Brown—August 9, 2014 – Fergus, Missouri

Geneviève Bergeron; Hélène Colgan; Nathalie Croteau; Barbara Daigneault; Anne-Marie Edward; Maud Haviernick; Barbara Klucznik-Widajewicz ; Maryse Laganière; Maryse Leclair; Anne-Marie Lemay; Sonia Pelletier; Michèle Richard; Annie St-Arneault; Annie Turcotte. – December 6, 1989 – Montreal, Quebec

Sammy Yatim—July 27, 2013 – Toronto, ON

Concetta Principe is a writer of poetry, walking: not a nun’s diary (2013) and Interference (1999), and fiction, Stained Glass (1997), with an emphasis on explorations of the hybrid genre of prose-poetry. She has had pieces published in online journals such as Lemon Hound and The Rusty Toque and in print journals such as The Malahat ReviewGrainMatrix, and Descant since the‘’90s. She received her PhD in the Humanities from York University in 2014 and has an academic book-length project coming out this spring.

(EDITOR’S NOTE: Concetta Principe sent us this Author Note shortly after the release of our Fall Issue in 2015.)

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