Toronto announces its new Poet Laureate
Mar. 08, 2019
Global Korean Post
Al Moritz (A.F. Moritz) has been selected to be Toronto’s sixth Poet Laureate, pending approval by City Council at its March 27 and 28 meeting.
Described as a “master of metaphor,” Al Moritz has published 20 books of poetry and was the 2009 Griffin Poetry Prize winner for The Sentinel.
His book The New Measures received the League of Canadian Poets’ 2013 Raymond Souster Award and was a finalist for the Governor General’s Award. His most recent work is the 2018 retrospective collection The Sparrow.
He lives in Toronto and is the Blake C. Goldring Professor of the Arts and Society at Victoria College, University of Toronto.
The position of Toronto’s Poet Laureate began in 2001. The position honours a Toronto poet whose work displays excellence and who has written on themes relevant to Torontonians. The Laureate is an ambassador for poetry and the arts and infuses poetry into a range of official and informal city activities to attract people to the literary world. The Poet Laureate’s mandate also includes the creation of a legacy project that will be unique to the individual. Moritz’s legacy project will be announced at a later date.
He will hold the position for three years and will receive an annual honorarium of $10,000 to serve as Toronto’s literary ambassador championing local literary arts and wordsmiths.
The following people, listed chronologically, have served as Toronto’s Poet Laureate since 2001: Dennis Lee, Pier Giorgio di Cicco, Dionne Brand, George Elliott Clarke and Anne Michaels.