Local writer shortlisted for literary award

A poem influenced by a set of Whitehorse power outages has snagged local poet Michael Eden Reynolds a shortlisting for the 2010 CBC Literary Award.

A poem influenced by a set of Whitehorse power outages has snagged local poet Michael Eden Reynolds a shortlisting for the 2010 CBC Literary Award.

It’s the second time Reynolds has won the title; the first time, in 2006, was for his poem, Fugue. He’s one of the 26 poets in Canada to be shortlisted.

Outage is set in a mythical Whitehorse following a power outage that has plunged the city in darkness.

Reynolds wrote the poem during the winter of 2008 when outages were happening about every three weeks. So often in fact, that Reynolds was forced to stop working on the poem one day when the lights cut out.

He wrote and performed the poem for last year’s arts event Dark Days, but it has not yet been published.

It’s one of the few poems of his that Reynolds considers to be about the North.

This even though many of the poems in his recent book of poetry, Slant Room, waltz with the notion.

“I don’t think of myself as a northern writer,” said Reynolds.

“But maybe that’s just me fighting against being ghettoized as one.”

Although the award is flattering – especially since the judges included such A-list writers as Marina Endicott, Karen Solie and Evelyn Lau – Reynolds doesn’t think it will make his poetry books fly off bookstore shelves any faster.

But that’s the poetry business in Canada.

Following the publishing of his book last fall he’s turned his attention to an epic poem he started writing in 1999.

The poem, After Trout, is about Canadian painter Tom Thompson’s death in 1917. The artist had been challenged to catch a legendary trout, but after he set out on his canoe in Canoe Lake, Thompson was never seen again.

Reynolds focuses on the eight-day period before Thompson’s body floated ashore using a trout as his narrator.

The poem has been slow-going, but that doesn’t bother Reynolds.

“I only hope to finish the poem before the centenary of his death,” he said with a laugh.

Contact Vivian Belik at

vivianb@yukon-news.com

Just Posted

A motorcycle with driver pulled over on the right side of the North Klondike Highway whose speed was locked in at 171 kilometres per hour. (Courtesy/Yukon RCMP)
Patrols of Yukon highways find poorly-secured loads, intoxicated drivers

The ongoing patrols which police call ‘Operation Cooridor’ is mainly focused on commercial vehicles.

Awaken Festival organizers Meredith Pritchard, Colin Wolf, Martin Nishikawa inside the Old Firehall in Whitehorse on May 11. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
Performing arts fest plans to awaken artistic talent in Whitehorse and the rural North

‘A value of ours is to make theatre as accessible as possible.’

April Mikkelsen tosses a disc during a ladies only disc golf tournament at Solstice DiscGolfPark on May 8. John Tonin/Yukon News
Yukon sees its first-ever women’s disc golf tournament

The Professional Disc Golf Assocation had a global women’s event last weekend. In the Yukon, a women’s only tournament was held for the first time ever.

Dave Blottner, executive director at the Whitehorse Food Bank, said the food bank upped its services because of the pandemic. (John Tonin/Yukon News)
Food Bank sees Yukoners’ generosity firsthand

“Businesses didn’t know if they could stay open but they were calling us to make sure we were able to stay open.”

Air North president Joe Sparling said the relaxing of self-isolation rules will be good for the business, but he still expects a slow summer. (Mike Thomas/Yukon News)
Air North president expects a slow summer

Air North president Joe Sparling suspects it will be a long time before things return to pre-pandemic times

A prescribed burn is seen from the lookout at Range Road and Whistle Bend Way in Whitehorse May 12. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)
Editorial: Are you ready for a forest fire?

Citizens for a Firesmart Whitehorse have listed some steps for Yukoners to boost safety and awareness

Caribou pass through the Dempster Highway area in their annual migration. A recent decision by the privacy commissioner has recommended the release of some caribou collar re-location data. (Justin Kennedy/Yukon News)
Privacy commissioner recommends release of caribou location data

Department of Environment says consultation with its partners needed before it will consider release

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Family pleased youth will be able to get Pfizer vaccine

Angela Drainville, mother of two, is anxious for a rollout plan to come forward

Safe at home office in Whitehorse on May 10, 2021. (John Tonin/Yukon News)
Federal government provides $1.6 million for Yukon anti-homelessness work

Projects including five mobile homes for small communities received funding.

Drilling at Northern Tiger’s 3Ace gold project in 2011. Randi Newton argues that mining in the territory can be reshaped. (Yukon government/file)
Editorial: There’s momentum for mining reform

CPAWS’ Randi Newton argues that the territory’s mining legislations need a substantial overhaul

At its May 10 meeting, Whitehorse city council approved the subdivision for the Kwanlin Dün First Nation’s business park planned in Marwell. (Submitted)
KDFN business park subdivision approved

Will mean more commercial industrial land available in Whitehorse

Main Street in Whitehorse on May 4. Whitehorse city council has passed the first two readings of a bylaw to allow pop-up patios in city parking spaces. Third reading will come forward later in May. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)
Whitehorse council pursuing restaurant patio possibilities

Council passes first two readings for new patio bylaw

Most Read