Word Vancouver

September 14, 2020

The first “Word On The Street Vancouver” festival was held in 1995. Rebranded as Word Vancouver in 2013, the festival celebrated its 25th anniversary last year. With that history, and the recent experience of scores of online readings, panel discussions, workshops, and other gatherings, Word Vancouver is ready for the 2020 all-virtual festival, Saturday, September 19, through Sunday, September 27. Word Vancouver is free, with donations gratefully accepted. See the Word Vancouver schedule here.

more to read!

June 18, 2020

June is National Indigenous History Month and CBC invites you to celebrate by reading from their list of books by First Nations, Métis and Inuit authors. Among the 35 titles, many are, or include, poetry.

listening to Canada

January 17, 2020

Since 2016, The Small Machine Talks has produced more-or-less-monthly podcasts exploring the poetry scene of Central Canada and beyond. Now in Season 4, the interviews are freewheeling conversations co-hosted by Amanda Earl and a.m. kozak. Have a listen.

over the border poetry

August 16, 2019

Wondering what’s new in Canadian poetry? CBC Books has posted their Fall Book Preview, with 23 collections of Canadian poetry to watch for this fall.

and more poetry on film

February 5, 2019

Known as “The People’s Poet,” Milton Acorn was born and died on Prince Edward Island. But in the years between, he meandered across Canada, earned the Governor General’s Literary Award, and published at least 13 books (five more collections were published posthumously).

In The Northern Red Oak, poems for and about Acorn, published a year after his death, poet Gwendolyn MacEwen wrote, “You could go for years without seeing him, and yet he’ll always be there somehow, a great craggy presence at the back of your mind, a gnarled tree in silhouette on the horizon.”

In Love and Anger,” an hour-long documentary directed and produced by Kent Martin, meanders along with Acorn as he tells his story and recites his poems.

island poetry

September 5, 2018

Nanaimo, BC

Nanaimo, BC, Poet Laureate, Tina Biello, has announced the lineup for year two of the Poet Laureate Reading Series. Held on Saturday afternoons at the Harbourfront Branch of the Nanaimo Library, this round of readings features:

  • September 15, 2018 – Leanne McIntosh and Daniel Scott
  • November 17, 2018 – Pat Smekal and Cornelia Hoogland
  • February 16, 2019 – Kim Clark and Sonnet L’Abbe
  • April 20, 2019 – The “Island Five” [ed note: sometimes called the “Bellingham Five” for their launch at SpeakEasy]: Susan Alexander, Terry Ann Carter, Linda Thompson, Barbara Pelman, and Richard Osler
  • June 15, 2019 – Kevin Paul and Kayla Czaga

Tucked away in the Comox Valley of Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Cumberland calls itself “a bustling village.” Home to some 3,700 souls, it’s an area known for hiking, biking, and refreshing dips in glacier-fed Comox Lake. If an end-of-summer visit sounds tempting, consider enrolling in the Deep in Cascadia Poetics Retreat, September 6-9, 2018.

A no-frills gathering of up to 30 participants, Deep in Cascadia will focus on “our role as poets and bioregionalists at this time of ecological crisis and end-stage empire, and to support one another in our efforts to create the deepest gestures in response to this situation and how that relates to Cascadia.”

See the complete description and schedule, visit the Cascadia Poetics LAB.


February 17, 2017

Galiano Literary FestivalLooking for something to do this weekend? The 8th annual Galiano Literary Festival starts today, Friday, February 17, 2017, and continues through Sunday the 19th on Galiano Island, BC, Canada. There will be workshops, readings and plenty of relaxation. All events are held at the Galiano Oceanfront Inn and Spa, a 5-minute walk from the ferry or 15 minutes by float plane from Vancouver or Victoria. Download the complete schedule on the Galiano Literary Festival website.

get outta town

September 17, 2016

Paper Pages BooksIf you’re looking for something different to do, and if you are interested in contemporary book arts, you still have a couple of weeks to see the Paper, Pages & Books exhibit at the Sidney Museum on Vancouver Island. Walk on the ferry in Anacortes; the museum is a short 8-minute walk from the ferry terminal in Sidney.

poetry touring

February 21, 2016

Nanaimo Poetry Map

There are many ways to experience a place. The city of Nanaimo, BC, Canada, on Vancouver Island, has a new one: the Nanaimo Poetry Map. Spearheaded by Nanaimo’s First Poet Laureate, Naomi Beth Wakan, the project invited Nanaimo poets to submit “works that are in some way related to a particular point on the map or site in Nanaimo. The poems are not intended to be descriptions of places rather they are impressions of them.”

The resulting map was launched in January and the Nanaimo Poetry Map is now available online. Clicking on a location takes you to a brief description and a downloadable PDF of the poem. Take a tour of Nanaimo!

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