Chalmers Arts Foundation Fellow Judith Ariana Fitzgerald is one of our most neglected national treasures in Canada, and has over thirty works to her credit, including poetry, biography, anthologies, and children’s books. Short-listed for (or recipient of) several major honors including the Fiona Mee, Trillium, Governor-General’s Poetry and Writers’ Choice Awards, Fitzgerald is perhaps best known for her newspaper blog/column that fearlessly achieves the remarkable feat of raising The Globe & Mail to the condition of poetry.
The second edition of The New Long Poem Anthology (edited by acclaimed poet Sharon Thesen), a collection of longer works; sequential poems; extended poems; and serial, lengthy or longish poems, is an important resource and geomantic touchstone for aspiring writers and fans of #CanLit alike, and includes work by Anne Carson, Christopher Dewdney, Lisa Robertson, Jeff Derksen, Don McKay, Erin Mouré, Patrick Friesen, Steve McCaffery, George Bowering, Dionne Brand, Louis Dudek, Diana Hartog, Robert Kroetsch, Daphne Marlatt, David McFadden, Barry McKinnon, bpNichol, Michael Ondaatje, Lola Lemire Tostevin, Fred Wah, Phyllis Webb, Robin Blaser, and Yolande Villemaire.
Miranda Pearson moved to Canada from England in 1991 and has made many important contributions to the literary scene in Vancouver, BC through her work as an editor, teacher, and poet. Pearson’s poetry has been published widely in literary journals and anthologies, including The Bright Well: Contemporary Canadian Poems about Facing Cancer and Forcefield: 77 Women Poets of British Columbia. The Aviary, Pearson’s second book of poetry and the winner of the Alfred G. Bailey Award in 2006, is an intriguing collection in its progression from shorter poems with more recognizable lines of verse to longer poems that dance to the very edges of the page with increasing finesse and innovation.
Co-winner of the Ralph Gustafson Poetry Award and born and raised in Regina, writer Judith Krause is the current and fifth Poet Laureate of Saskatchewan, an appointment that acknowledges her having “meaningful connections with other writers and experience organizing occasions for thinking about poetry differently” and that includes her teaching experience at Sage Hill, an inspirational place for visiting writers. In an interview with The Leader Post, Emma Graney indicates that Krause’s main goal is to raise the profile of Saskatchewan poetry and “celebrate the spirit of poets” in the province, despite the genre's “quiet profile.” In her most recent collection Mongrel Love, we may admire her uncanny mix of wry humour and mammalian sympathies that Dante Alighieri would surely agree flow along absolutely caninamente.
Winner of the 2013 Governor General’s Literary Award for English-language poetry, Katherena Vermette’s North End Love Songs, contains a beguiling mix of furtive fright and holistic grace in its visit to the North End in Winnipeg, Manitoba. What is particular refreshing about the book is that its spare language invites the reader into intimate spaces, at times touching and in a number of cases, disconcerting.