The first national anthology of poetry by African Canadians will be released in celebration of Black History Month this February. Published by Frontenac House, The Great Black North: Contemporary African Canadian Poetry features the works of over 90 poets across Canada.
The poets are a diverse bunch in terms of form, history and geography. From big cities to small towns, the west coast to the Maritimes and beyond Canada’s borders to countries of origin like Somalia, Nigeria, Jamaica and Kenya, these poets bring a diverse voice and a unique history that weaves together the struggles and victories that have formed the African-Canadian experience.
Congratulations to Ken Babstock , who last evening won the 2012 Griffin Poetry Prize for a Canadian poet, for his fourth collection, Methodist Hatchet. Babstock was in the running with much-respected poets Jan Zwicky (for Forge, and whose Songs for Relinquishing the Earth won the 1999 Governor General’s Literary Award for poetry) and Phil Hall […]
The sinking of the Titanic has resonated now for 100 years in the consciousness of Canadians. The grief, wonder, and curiosity the disaster continues to inspire has been the impetus for countless literary works. While the majority of these are factual or biographical, significant imaginative works of poetry and prose have been produced, works that strive to understand the psychological, social and personal effects of the disaster. Here, then, is a survey of some of the most important works of poetry produced on the subject of the sinking of the Titanic, poetry read and loved by, and for the most part produced by, Canadians.
February, the season of cold and of love, is upon us. Not that easy, natural, bursting love that blooms in June and washes into August, but love deepened by hardship, metaphorical and actual chill winds, love recovered and deepened through humour, and self-mockery, and the need to go on.
At this time of year, it’s easy to get caught up in reader anxiety: why haven’t I picked up Book X yet? Friend Y has already read book Z and I haven’t! Zounds, I still haven’t read all the shortlisted books from last year’s Prize A!
Some of this stress makes sense, as after all, books named to prize shortlists tend to be important and interesting works of art, and well worth reading. But some of the stress is fuelled by social competition, and a sense of commitment that doesn’t always make sense.