Figurski is a London poet/musician with a degree in English literature from Carleton and a Masters from Western. His poetry has been published in three collections and in numerous literary journals. He has also edited a poetry journal and books by James Reaney Sr. and Thomas Nashe. As a musician, Figurski has played in a number of London bands and his work has been recorded on 6 CDs.
Asked about the evolution of his poetic style and what he generally tries to accomplish in his poetry, Figurski says:
“Like most poets, I started out by imitating those poets and writers I liked, and admired. This was the early 70’s. I wrote mostly free verse about the things I experienced using a language that was more or less self-consciously “poetic”. But writing is also a craft. I deliberately tried writing in many different forms: rhymed metred poetry, prose poems, haiku, automatic writing, surrealism, writing in the first person as a character who isn’t me, experimenting with vocabulary, line breaks, punctuation; all as a way of consciously developing my craft. Along the way, I began to find it easier to express myself in a voice that felt natural to me, but that deliberately embodied elements of craft. Sometime later, maybe around the same time as I discovered abstract art, I discovered sound poetry, and began to incorporate more abstract forms: performance poetry, concrete poetry, and just using sounds. I see now that I started writing poetry because I was attracted to engaging in a creative process and the main form of expression I had to bring to that process in the beginning was language. If I try and accomplish anything in my poetry, it has been that in the process of writing I discover something about myself and my relationship to what I’m experiencing and have been able to communicate that in a way that is striking, original, and true.”