Don McKay has been called the Canadian poet laureate of ecological philosophy. A revered poet, esteemed naturalist, and distinguished scholar, editor, and teacher, McKay will give a poetry reading on Friday, March 2, at 7:00 in the Carriage House at Beaconsfield Historic House in Charlottetown.
Island-born poet Zach Wells says that “awe, astonishment and wonder” arethe keynotes of McKay’s poems and that “the workings of the human mind” are his primary subject matter. Halifax poet Brian Bartlett describes McKay as “a poet with a patient eye, an acute arresting ear, over flowing with details of ornithology, botany, weather, industry, books and music… philosophical phrasing, folksy idiom, madcap humour and elegy.”
McKay’s numerous awards include the Order of Canada, two Governor General’s Awards for poetry, and the Griffin Poetry Prize. A co-founder of Brick Books, one of North America’s premier poetry publishers, he has been a master editor for many of Canada’s finest authors. Considered the father figure of ecological poetry in Canada, his essays on poetics and “eco-poetry” are illuminating guides for poets, naturalists, and other readers.
A beloved teacher of creative writing and literature at the University of Western Ontario, the University of New Brunswick, and The Banff Centre for the Arts, he now writes full-time in St. John’s, Newfoundland.
His reading is sponsored by the UPEI Dean of Arts and English Department, with support from The Canada Council for the Arts. The public is invited and admission is free.