Adam Samuel Litovitz

AUGUST 17, 1982 – JUNE 16, 2019


North York born and Toronto-based son of revered poet Malca Litovitz, née Halpern, and architect Allan Litovitz, Adam was a writer, musician, and visual artist of insight and imagination. He was a professor of English and film studies, cultural philosopher, and film and literary journalist (New York Magazine/Vulture, CBC Radio One, Random House Canada, The Globe and Mail). Adam graduated from York University (Master of Arts, English) and was the Graduate Recipient of the Guy Hamel Award in Renaissance Literature from the University of Toronto.

For over twelve years, Adam was the beloved life partner and collaborator of Sook-Yin Lee. They released two music albums: JOOJ and jooj two – and composed the original scores for her feature movies – Year of the Carnivore and Octavio is Dead! Adam served as Sook-Yin’s story editor for both films. They pursued myriad other creative adventures, including the experimental dance narratives How Can I Forget? and Sphere of Banished Suffering.  Adam wrote and recorded the theme song for the podcast SleepoverCBC and co-created the original score for a Netflix TV series with music producer Onakabazien. Adam Litovitz wrote the manuscript Kinship of the Overheard, edited by Sky Goodden. He made wonderful drawings that tap into that which is deep, simple, and true. These are his selected works.

ANALYTIC WORKS

Photo for this section- MOVIE DATE with Adam & Sook-Yin drawing by Chester Brown.jpeg

MOVIE DATE

PUBLISHED IN HAZLITT | 2012

Adam and Sook-Yin would watch a movie, then talk about it while recording the conversation. Adam transcribed and edited what was said with surprising revelations.

Illustration by Chester Brown

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POETRY

SAYING GOODBYE TO OPINIONS, HELLO TO FEELINGS


Saying goodbye to opinions, hello to feelings,

Goodbye to feelings, hello to grievings,

Hello to greetings, goodbye to meetings,

Farewell to teethings, hello to teethings,

Goodbye to pleasing, hello to pleasing,

Hell of a sweet thing, hell of a sweet thing,

Heavenly beating, devilish seething,

Desiring, needing,

Goodbye to needing, wanting, and waiting,

Hello to making, hello to great things,

Goodbye to awful, eyeful, unthoughtful,

Hello to thinking, and thinking without thinking,

Just being, and being, and letting being be,

Grieving be, even needing be,

Leaving needing there, nowhere there, never bare, always scared, making fine, fine oh fine,

I'll do the time, draw the line, make it mine,

Mine of mine but theirs always theirs, always ours, beneath the bows, here we are, all these

scars, closing up, open wounds, open up, closing wounds, will you be asking me, asking me,

asking, is this so, is this necessarily so, and I don't know, no idea no, but i move to the place,

that place, the place, and i make my space, my fine space, i take my place and i sit down and i

don't move and i let it swirl and it dawns on me.

SOME NOW

There must have been one expression i've used that you've liked.

Okay, maybe not liked.

There must have been one moment,

just one,

which you've liked and that i've had a part in.

 

I'm not asking you to make a claim for me. 

No, i wouldn't do that.

But i'm asking you to trust me.

That's it, trust.

 

Would you ask me a question if you had a chance to?

What would you ask?

No, I can't ask that of you.

 

Come near.

This requires nearness.

Yes, you.

Come close.

 

We talk, or have spoken before.

We intend to.

You aren't close enough yet.

Move closer.

 

There is something further away,

not near.  Not even close.

It needs to be nearer.

I need it.

 

I can't tolerate this distance.

It's unbearable.  It can't be helped, I know.

But still, you could do something about it.

Make something happen, and if you decide to, yes, in fact,

make it happen, then do it now.

WE ADJUST TO THE CHEMICALS

We adjust to the chemicals

not impervious to commotion

or the clarity that persists

 

the time of fecundity

 

what image will it awaken?

 

and why is this the time of fecundity,

you softly speak

not wanting to imprison yourself in any particular green before realizing it must identify itself as such

and you didn't want this burden

or you did

and you mathematically convince yourself of either cause

 

I wanted this long truth and was offered a shortness of breath

a palpitating inability to murmur

when pacing around is the good sign

of the good son

 

I note with firmness

rechanneling your energy into nothingness