Reinvention: Poems

Emmett, Rik

  • Poetry from beloved lead guitarist of the multi-platinum record selling legendary band Triumph

    Reinvention is a largely autobiographical collection of poetry — a project that followed on the heels of Rik Emmett retiring from a touring musician’s and college educator’s life in early 2019. Inside all of the slashes that define him — singer/songwriter/guitarist/rock star/teacher/columnist — writing has always been his strongest avocation, and the poetic style of “Ultra Talk,” in particular, offered a welcome spark for a songwriter’s freedom of expression. This creative license is organized under seven headings – The Humanities, Life & Death, There’s Politics in Everything, Double Helix, Soapbox Sermonettes, Time Time Time, and Ars Nova 2020.

    Rik’s poetry (literally) reinvents his own retirement, and it’s not just some aging dilettante’s bucket list fancy. He discovered a sincere way to tie up a lot of loose ends, fulfill dormant promise, and eschew show biz tangents. Reinvention, his first book, makes some sense of a life that always went in a lot of different directions at once. Finally, he’s given himself permission to chase a mode of self-expression with less commercial potential … than jazz guitar recordings.


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  • Rik Emmett is in three Canadian “Halls” and two “Walks of Fame.” After 12 platinum LPs in his Triumph years, Rik produced 20 indie projects, from rock and blues to jazz, folk, and classical. His latest release is Folk Songs for the Farewell Bonfire. An avowed family man, he’s been married for 45 years; he was also a Guitar Player magazine columnist for more than a dozen years and an educator for a few decades at Humber College. Rik is Artistic Director Emeritus of the SongStudio Workshop, and a published poet and cartoonist. He lives in Burlington, Ontario.

  • Published: September 2021

    ISBN: 9781770416277

    Dimensions: 5.5 x 8.5 in.

    Pages: 120

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“In Rik Emmett we have a poet of wry and wise observation, one who questions the Dance of Life not with spite but with deep curiosity. The joust of his arguments and piercing laments take the reader into personal introspection. Those who tilt toward revelation and reinvention will find on these pages both a home and a kindred spirit.” — Jane Christmas, author of Open House: A Life in Thirty-Two Moves

Reinvention is a captivating glimpse deep into the life and soul of one of our beloved rock ‘n’ roll heroes. With sharp wit, engaging storytelling and an out-an-out vulnerability that will take you by surprise, drawing the tears right out of you, Rik Emmett has written a beautiful collection of poems that bravely define what it means to love and live fully.” — Emm Gryner, three-time Juno nominee and author of The Healing Power of Singing: Raise Your Voice, Change Your Life

“Rik Emmett is someone who has always sought out new modes of expression, new kinds of music. I don’t know if poetry is always a natural progression from hard rock and jazz, but it’s clear Rik has found an inspiring vocal register in verse. Those who have followed his career will recognize his wit and irreverence but might notice a new tone of introspection emerging in these pages. His fans everywhere will be delighted.” — Adam Sol, author of Broken Dawn Blessings and How a Poem Moves: A Field Guide for Readers of Poetry