NEW BOOKS: READINGS

THE FABRIC OF DAY, new and selected poems, May, 2017, Thistledown Press

Regina launch, ThursdayMay 25th, 7 PM, the Mackenzie Art Gallery.

Saskatoon, Thursday, June 1, 7 PM, McNally Robinson, with Mari-Lou Rowley.

Prince Albert, Saturday, June 10, 2:00 PM, John Culenaere Public Library.

Edmonton, Tuesday, September 12, 7PM,  Olive Reading Series, The Almanac, 10351-82 Ave. (Whyte Ave).

Calgary, Thursday, September, 14, 7PM, Owls Nest Books, Elbow Dr. & 50 Ave SW.

Toronto, Tuesday, October 10, 8PM, Art Bar Reading Series, Free Times Cafe,  320 College St. (College and Spadina).

Barrie, Thursday, October 12, 7PM, Word Up Reading Series, Unity Market and Cafe, 25 Market St.

Montreal, Friday, October 20th, 7PM, Westmount Public Library

Ottawa, Tuesday, October 24, 8PM, Tree Reading Series, Black Squirrel Books, 1073 Bank St.

Then … Victoria, February, 16, 2018, 7:30 PM, Planet Earth Series, Hillside Coffee &Tea, 1633 Hillside (across from Bolen Books).

It has been interesting to look over my last (five) books choosing work for the new, selected, Fabric of Day, and to see images and words repeating. So much about “time,” and the prairie air we breathe, and live within.  You can see an interview about the book, and about writing at www.queenmobs.com

Also released: BIBLIO FILES, a history of the Regina Public Library, September 2017, UofR Press.  Edited with Susan Birley and Jeannie Mah,  the book tells a very human story of a Canadian library with many “firsts,” much innovation,  and personal courage.

I’m looking forward to seeing new and old friends.

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To Persona or Not, an exploration: Visual Art, Philosophy and Jungian psychology,  MacKenzie Art Gallery, April 14, 7:00 PM, 2016

persona:  the aspect of someone’s character that is presented to or perceived by others.

Through performance art and discussion with a philosopher and a Jungian analyst, we’ll explore the many meanings of “persona.” Is this a human/social necessity, elements of character, authenticity, or just “dressing up”? Please join us and take part in a lively discussion on the topic. All welcome, free admission.

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Anne-s of Green Fables, October 23, 2015 

Join me, with another Anne (Lazurko) October 23rd for  the 2015 Saskatchewan Writers Guild annual conference. We’ll talk and have dialogue on “place:” Anne Lazurko on fiction, and I’ll take on non-fiction and poetry.

The conference theme is Great Expectations, to be held at the Travelodge (4177 Albert Street) in Regina.  Check the Saskatchewan Writers Guild for details. www.skwriter.com

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2015: Thinking about … Liberal Arts in Universities?

Can you imagine we are having this discussion? While all recent research confirms the value of a Liberal Arts/Humanities degree for world understanding and skill in critical thinking – for living, and future employment, (as an example see the Financial Times, www.ft.com The benefits of a liberal education do not go out of date) in many universities students continue to graduate with only subjects related to professional degrees – job training, so to speak.  While we are happy to have individuals well trained in their professions, whether engineering or education, without inclusion of what we used to call, “university” classes, Liberal Arts or Humanities classes,  we send these graduates into the world without context,  

For sure, in these times, students, and more often parents, want a job at the end of a degree. Parents are asking for, or demanding, “Direct Entry” into professional schools, very different from earlier times when an Arts or Science undergraduate degree was most often required for entry into a professional school. 

So what’s to be done?  Should we move professional degrees to Polytechnic or Technical School locations, where the Liberal Arts don’t often accompany job training, though that is changing. Should we require at least a year of Humanities, interspersed with first year professional school classes? Should we at least require one class per year, to inform of the “fact” or benefits, or even the reality of the Liberal Arts?  One class during the entire professional degree?

I am writing about this situation now (for a publication) and, as you may see, I feel strongly about the situation.

I was blessed with a mother who read, who confirmed her kids school involvement in music, and “drama,” as it was then called; who encouraged her sports-minded sons to participate in the same. Our little town was also peopled with amazing teachers: our science, math and music teacher went on to a major school district position in music; our Literature, Social Studies and French teacher went on to teach in Education in Concordia. Without this arts and history background to fall back on during my life I would have been bereft.  To me, as well as giving pleasure, the Fine Arts and the Humanities saved my life. These are not subjects to be accomplished, but resources for human ways of living.


When I do workshops in schools, I see the shift in a both students and teachers when we hit upon a text, or story that touches them now in their lives, right now. You actually see relief – they are no longer alone with their joy or pain. They are enthusiastic. This surprises many – they want to know about the books, the films, the visual art, the music that speaks to them, where it is, how to get it, what it means. They realize they may be budding historians, or even philosophers in the making.

Maybe what we need now in the community is a new and wider conversation about the Liberal Arts as a resource for life and a context for a job.