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Catherine Graham


April 19: Catherine Graham is a Page Turner. Are You?

Catherine Graham is the 2014 winner of the IFOA Poetry Now competition and her fifth collection of poetry, Her Red Hair Rises with the Wings of Insects, is a finalist for the Raymond Souster Poetry Award. She is an instructor in the Creative Writing program of the University of Toronto's School of Continuing Studies, where she won an Excellence in Teaching Award. Catherine also believes in the vitality of poetry placed in our landscapes. Her own poems are on permanent exhibit on the waterfront in Burlington, Ontario and she served as a founding member of the board of directors of Project Bookmark Canada. So, rise up and catch Catherine's fever for "the yoking of the imaginary and the real"; become a Page Turner today and you could win her gorgeous, prize-nominated new book.  

Place in imagination. Place in real time. I love how Project Bookmark Canada merges them by physically placing markers inscribed with passages from books set in that location. Whether from novels, short stories or poetry, these excerpts become more alive and meaningful to the reader as they stand in the exact place and experience the scene the author envisioned through the power of words.

I’ve been a supporter of Project Bookmark Canada from the beginning when founder and executive director Miranda Hill invited me to be a part of this national, charitable organization. Thanks to Miranda’s passion and hard work, I’ve seen it grow from a place in her imagination to a place in real time. This yoking of the imaginary and the real is what Project Bookmark Canada is all about.

I currently help by leading a Project Bookmark Canada poetry group. Five poets—Kateri Lanthier, Margot Lettner, Lois Lorimer, Kathryn Mockler and I keep a sharp lookout for poems that follow Project Bookmark Canada’s criteria: the reader must be able to stand in the physical location referred to in the writer’s work. As it turns out, many poems fit this mandate. Poems like “Memory of Bathurst Street” by Raymond Souster, “Leaving the Island” by Roo Borson and “Return to Metcalfe Street” by Nyla Matuk to name a few. We know there are more.

How might you help? Become a Page Turner like me and donate twenty dollars to Project Bookmark Canada. Your donation will aid with current projects and help with finding homes for the poems our poetry group is compiling. All pledges made today will be entered into a draw to receive a signed copy of my latest prize-nominated poetry collection, Her Red Hair Rises with the Wings of Insects. Help spread the Bookmark story and become a Page Turner today!