Stephen Collis

Local connection for featured poets at festival

Two of the featured poets at the upcoming Cascadia Poetry Festival in Cumberland are Matt Rader and Stephen Collis.

Both have a local connection as Rader grew up and worked in the Comox Valley and Collis has ancestors who were associated with coal mining on Vancouver Island.

Rader’s first book of poetry, Miraculous Hours, was a finalist for the Gerald Lampert Award for best first book of poems in Canada and his latest, Desecrations, is a compelling consideration of time, middle age and the import of attending to details that parade across our days.

All together he has four books of poetry, three of which are chapbooks.

His book of short stories, What I Want To Tell Goes Like This, concerns Vancouver Island’s turbulent social history.

Radar read at Poetry@Red Tree last year to an appreciative audience and also read at the Symposium on Cultural Mapping held at the Comox Valley Art Gallery.

He shows a keen appreciation for other poets – like Robert Haas, Seamus Heaney, Mavis Gallant and Wallace Stevens – in his work.

He currently teaches in the Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies at UBC Okanagan in Kelowna.

Collis grew up on Vancouver Island but now lives in Vancouver.

He is deeply connected to place and has participated and initiated many actions in defense of the southwest coast of B.C.

Called the “most dangerous poet in Canada” for his work against the Trans Mountain oil pipeline, he has also studied, taken part in and written about the Occupy Movement in Dispatches from the Occupation.

His five books of poetry include the Dorothy Livesay Poetry prize-winning On the Material and Mine which “plunges back in time to reconstruct the history of coal on Vancouver Island.”

He has also written three books in the ongoing Barricades Project, and studies of Phyllis Webb, Susan Howe and Robert Duncan (editor).

He currently teaches at SFU.

Cascadia Poetics Lab Society will present the Cascadia Poetry Festival in Cumberland at the Masonic Hall, 2687 Dunsmuir, Sept. 8-10.

Festivities start Friday at 7 p.m. An all access pass can be bought for $20 at Rarebird Bookshop, Laughing Oyster Bookstore, Bop City Records, Blue Heron Books and Red Tree Specialty Coffee.

More details can be found at cascadiapoeticslab.ca or on a FB event, Cascadia Poetry Festival.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Comox Valley RCMP impound six vehicles in six days in May

All drivers were found to be going at least 47 km/h over the speed limit

Cumberland water plant costs come in higher than planned

Extra costs result of delays, Hydro requirements and right of way access

Boil water notice lifted in Union Bay

The notice has been lifted as of May 27.

Tsolum River Restoration Society members keeping busy during COVID-19 times

Young fish can get stranded in the most unlikely of places

Police looking for witnesses to Courtenay bear spray assault

The incident took place Tuesday, May 26 at around 8:30 p.m.

Only four new COVID-19 cases, 228 active across B.C.

Health officials watching as activities ramp up

Comox Valley business map offers information on local eateries, grocery stores and more

Search and click for hours and services offered during the COVID-19 pandemic

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

RCMP told of alleged assault in Courtenay hours after the fact

Police only made aware of possible attack through social media posts

Feds looking at ways to reunite families amid COVID-19 border restrictions with U.S.

Some families with members of dual-citizenship have become separated due to the pandemic

B.C. aquaculture farm’s employees sweat it out to raise funds for food banks

For every five minutes of exercise recorded, Cermaq Canada is donating a dollar to local food banks in communities they operate

Condition in kids with possible COVID-19 link being studied in Canada

This month, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued an alert to doctors about MIS-C

‘I knew what he wanted’: Kootenay man spends hours in tree as black bear patrols below

Francis Levasseur is no stranger to the outdoors, but a recent run-in with a bear caused quite a scare

COVID cancelled their wedding plans, so they married on a BC mountaintop

Ceremony was live streamed to friends and family around the world

Most Read