We would like to thank the following poets who have shared their pieces with us to present throughout the conference.

October Chanterelling by Sarah de Leeuw

Saturday February 20 at 8:45am 

Nominated in 2017 for a Governor General’s Literary Prize in non-fiction, de Leeuw holds two CBC Literary Prizes for creative non-fiction and the Dorothy Livesay BC Book Prize for poetry. Author/editor of eleven books, de Leeuw is a Professor and Canada Research Chair (Humanities and Health Inequities) with the Northern Medical Program in Prince George, a distributed site of UBC’s Faculty of Medicine. She grew up on Haida Gwaii and now divides her time between Prince George and Okanagan Centre, BC.


Garlic by Matt Rader

Saturday February 20 at 10:00am 

Matt Rader is the author of several books of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction including the forthcoming collection of poems, Ghosthawk (Nightwood Edition 2021). He teaches Creative Writing at the University of British Columbia. He lives and gardens with his family in Kelowna, BC.  


The Way We Are Made Of by Nancy Holmes 

Saturday February 20 at 12:15pm

Nancy Holmes has published five collections of poetry, most recently The Flicker Tree: Okanagan Poems. She is the editor of Open Wide a Wilderness: Canadian Nature Poems.  She is Associate Professor in Creative Writing at The University of British Columbia in Kelowna, British Columbia where she lives.  She also collaborates with communities and other artists on eco art projects both locally and internationally. Nancy won the 2017 Malahat Review’s Creative Non-Fiction award.


Fields of Wheat by Michelle Doege 

Saturday February 20 at 2:15pm

Poet, writer of stories and educator, Michelle Doege is an engaged member of her creative community in Vernon, BC. Crossing a border from the U.S. into Canada, with her [now] wife from India, caused her to reflect on the long-ago border crossings of her German and Irish ancestors. These musings form the basis of her poem, “Fields of Wheat,” included in the upcoming release of her first book of poems, Root of Light (Shanti Arts, Fall 2021).  www.michelledoegepoet.com


August Raspberries by Fiona Tinwei Lam 

Saturday February 20 at 3:30pm

Fiona Tinwei Lam’s third poetry collection Odes & Laments celebrates the overlooked wonder in the everyday while lamenting harm to our ecosystems. She edited The Bright Well: Contemporary Canadian Poems on Facing Cancer and co-edited Love Me True: Writers Reflect on the Ins, Outs, Ups & Downs of Marriage. Her work appears in more than 40 anthologies, including The Best Canadian Poetry in English. Her poetry videos have screened internationally. She teaches at SFU Continuing Studies. Fionalam.net


Rhubarb, Death in a Garden by Yvonne Blomer 

Sunday February 21 at 8:45am

Yvonne Blomer is the author of the travel memoir Sugar Ride: Cycling from Hanoi to Kuala Lumpur, and three books of poetry, most recently As if a Raven. She served as the city of Victoria poet laureate from 2015–2018. While Artist-in-Residence at the Robert Bateman Centre she created Ravine, Mouse, a Bird’s Beak a chapbook of ekphrastic ecological poetry in response to Bateman’s art. She is the editor of Refugium: Poems for the Pacific and Sweet Water: Poems for the Watersheds (both from Caitlin Press) https://www.yvonneblomer.com/


Saklikar portrait session, 28 July 2017.

Grandmother’s Instruction by Renée Sarojini Saklikar

Sunday February 21 at 10:05am

Renée Sarojini Saklikar’s ground-breaking poetry book about the bombing of Air India Flight 182, children of air india, won the Canadian Authors Association Poetry Prize and was shortlisted for the Dorothy Livesay Prize. Her book, Listening to the Bees, co-authored with Dr. Mark Winston, won the 2019 Gold Medal Independent Publishers Book Award, Environment/Ecology. She was the first Poet Laureate for the City of Surrey, (2015-2018) and was the 2017 UBC Okanagan Writer in Residence. Curator of the poetry series Lunch Poems at SFU, Renee’s work has been adapted for opera, visual art and dance.

About Renée Sarojini Saklika


Sometimes by Shelley A. Leedahl

Sunday February 21 at 11:15pm

Shelley A. Leedahl writes novels, short story and poetry collections, children’s books, and creative nonfiction. Recent titles include The Moon Watched It All and I Wasn’t Always Like This. Shelley’s an avid gardener, podcaster, hiker, musician, and kayaker, and she’s been calling Ladysmith home since 2014. Her 13th book – a poetry collection called Go – will be released with Radiant Press in 2022.  https://www.writersunion.ca/member/shelleya-leedahl


Malus Pumila by John Barton 

Sunday February 21 at 12:30pm

John Barton is the author and editor of twenty-eight books, chapbooks, and anthologies, most recently Lost Family: A Memoir (Signal, 2020). A three-time recipient of the Archibald Lampman Award, He’s also won an Ottawa Book Award, a CBC Literary Award, and a National Magazine Award. Between 1989 and 2018, John edited Arc Poetry Magazine, Vernissage: The Magazine of the National Gallery of Canada, and The Malahat Review. He is the City of Victoria’s first male and first queer poet laureate.


Wild Bees by Rhona McAdam 

Sunday February 21 at 1:45pm

Rhona McAdam is a poet, holistic nutritionist and food writer. She has a master’s in Food Culture & Communication from the University of Gastronomic Sciences (Slow Food’s university in Italy), is a longtime volunteer with Haliburton Community Organic Farm and teaches Eco-Nutrition at the Canadian School of Natural Nutrition. Her 10 previous books include Ex-Ville, poetry, and Digging the City, an urban agriculture manifesto. Her new poetry collection, Larder, is in the works, and includes poems on bees, bugs and lots of food. http://reallygoodwriter.com/


Seaweed by Cornelia Hoogland 

Sunday February 21 at 3:45pm

Cornelia Hoogland’s chapbook, Dressed in Only a Cardigan, She Picks Up Her Tracks in the Snow, is forthcoming with Baseline Press (2021). Cosmic Bowling (Guernica, 2020), is a collaboration with the visual artist Ted Goodden. Trailer Park Elegy and Woods Wolf Girl were finalists for Canadian national awards. Hoogland gardens on the most northerly Gulf Island in the Salish Sea, on the traditional territory of the K’ómoks Nation.http://www.corneliahoogland.com/