In all honesty, the previous school year was my biggest introduction to poetry thus far in my academic career. Sure, I had read some Shakespearean sonnets and struggled through Edmund Spenser's language, I had been introduced to the figure heads that are Wordsworth and Blake, and I even attempted a little Chaucer once. But Atlantic Canadian Poetry? I didn't even know the genre was in enough demand to be deemed a 'genre'. But, after taking Dr. McConnell's Contemporary Atlantic Canadian Poetry Seminar and having the privilege of working on the ACPA, I have come to realize not only my love for Canadian poetry, but also the astounding diversity of work we in Atlantic Canada get to brag about.
The project and purpose of the ACPA is to bring to light the amazing work written by poets in our own backyard. Furthermore, we as editors - and you as past and future contributors - wish to provide some scholarship on poets who are more than deserving of recognition. While continuing this goal, I have been lucky enough to read multiple entries on poets whom I had never heard of before. These entries, which include biographies, poems, critical analyses, and bibliographies of a poet by the author's choice, have piqued my interest in the work that has been published around me for years. Through these collections, I have discovered activism, nature, old literature, tragedy, and self-discovery; I have been defamiliarized and called to action, asked to reflect and reconsider, have encountered the real and the surreal, and have been opened to a genre of poetry who's sundry form, technique, and theme match that of the early sonnets and romantic names we are too often pointed towards.
To make sure the diversity mentioned above is noticed, I've compiled some categories to help you navigate the deep waters found in Atlantic Canadian Poetry. These categories include unique form, technique, and themes found on the archive to give you just an idea of what is to come if you choose to explore. So dive in to the different pools of work, and let them take you to new and exciting places.
El Jones - "Kings and Queens"
Sylvia Hamilton - "The Passage"
Sheree Fitch - "The Garbage Man"
Judy Gaudet - "Neap Tides"
Michael Crummey - "Capelin Skull"
Charles G. D. Roberts - "In an Old Barn"
M. Travis Lane - "Elegy"
Susan Paddon - "The Minister's Visit"
Shari Andrews - "No Trace Remains"
Lesley Choyce - "My Bicycle goes to Nova Scotia to Die"
Brian Bartlett - "West End, Halifax"
Eleonore Schonmaier - "Life Spinning Thinner"
R.M. Vaughan - 96 tears (in my jeans)
Tonja Gunvaldsen-Klaassen - "Gravity"
Sue Goyette - "A New Form"
Realism vs. Surrealism
Don McKay - "Setting the Table"
Kay Smith - "Holland"
Neil Murray - "Biblical Incident"
As the ACPA Editors, we wish to keep you up to date with new entries and exciting poetry news.