Poetry at the Manor gets a different look this year, but we’re still bringing you quality poetry from Poets Laureate across Canada. Due to restrictions surrounding COVID-19, we are unable to host this event in historic Willistead Manor in Windsor. However, Windsor’s Poet Laureate Emeritus Marty Gervais, Poet Laureate Mary Ann Mulhern, and the City of Windsor put their heads together and decided on an online format that will ensure we can still make this prestigious event happen! This online format also means viewers from across Canada can watch from the comfort of their own homes! The event will be hosted through Zoom, and will be broadcast on October 6th at 7pm Eastern Daylight Time, on Mayor Drew Dilkens’ YouTube page, and shared on Facebook pages for “Mayor Drew Dilkens”, “The City of Windsor – Municipal Government”, “Museum Windsor”, and “Black Moss Press”.
We have a great lineup of poets this year, beginning with Jason Heroux the current Poet Laureate of Kingston, Ontario. Jason has published four books of poetry and was a finalist for the 2016 ReLit Poetry Award. His work has been translated into French, Italian, and Arabic, his poetry has been featured in several anthologies, including Breathing Fire 2: Canada’s New Poets, and Best Canadian Poetry in English 2008, 2011 and 2016, and has appeared in magazines and journals in Canada, the U.S, Belgium, France, and Italy. Jason works at ServiceOntario, and lives with his wife Soheir, and their three cats, Akira, Pablo, and Neruda. His books can be purchased from http://mansfieldpress.net
Our next guest comes to us all the way from the East Coast at Prince Edward Island. Julie Pellissier-Lush is the current Poet Laureate of Prince Edward Island. She is an actress and bestselling author of “My Mi’kmaq Mother”, recipient of the Queens jubilee medal in 2013, the Meritorious Service Medal recipient in 2017, and the Senators 150 Medal in April 2019. She writes, acts, and does photography to preserve the history and culture of the Mi’kmaq for future generations. Julie wrote the poems for the play ‘Mi’kmaq Legends’ in 2010 and they have been performed for the last 8 years on many different stages in the Atlantic region. It is her hope that this play will someday travel all over Canada and beyond so more people have the opportunity to learn about the rich Mi’kmaq history. Julie lives in PEI with her husband Rick, her five children, and her Granddaughter Miah. Her books can be ordered through the following links: My Mi’kmaq Mother https://www.retromedia.ca/product-page/my-mi-kmaq-mother-by-julie-pellissier-lush and Mi’kmaq Campfire Stories of PEI https://acornpresscanada.com/store/mikmaq-campfire-stories-of-prince-edward-island
John Barton is the current Poet Laureate for the City of Victoria in British Columbia. His twenty-eight books, chapbooks, and anthologies include Polari, Seminal: The Anthology of Canada’s Gay-Male Poets, We Are Not Avatars: Essays, Memoirs, Manifestos, and The Essential Douglas LePan, which won a 2020 eLit Award. His twelfth collection of poems, Lost Family: A Memoir, a book of sonnets, was published this September by Signal Editions. The Porcupine’s Quill will publish The Essential Derk Wynand in October. He lives in Victoria, where he is the city’s fifth (and first male) poet laureate. John’s books can be ordered at http://www.vehiculepress.com/, https://munrobooks.com/, and https://www.indigo.ca. For more information about John, visit https://www.john-barton.ca/.
Windsor’s first female Poet Laureate and its second Poet Laureate, Mary Ann Mulhern, is celebrating the launch of her eighth book of poetry The Midnight Moon Sings of Murder. A recipient of many awards, including First Prize in the Freedom Festival Poetry Contest, you won’t want to miss Mary Ann’s performance! You can order her books through Fitzhenry and Whiteside https://www.fitzhenry.ca/Search-Results?q=Mary+ann+mulhern&LEAP_SearchSubmit=Submit
Youth Poet Laureate Samantha Badaoa of Windsor will also be presenting her poetry alongside this excellent lineup of poets! Samantha has just published her first book of poetry So am I with Black Moss Press, and is an active member of the spoken word poetry scene in Windsor. We are very excited to have her in this year’s lineup! You can purchase her book at https://www.fitzhenry.ca/Detail/9780887536069
Keep an eye on the Black Moss Facebook page or the Black Moss Blog on October 6th at 7pm for the link to this year’s Poetry at the Manor! Once the link is live it will remain active so you can enjoy this incredible evening for years to come!