Wow and congrats: The Griffin Prizes announced:
In what was presented as a competition between three generations of Canadian poets, it was the veteran A.F. Moritz who emerged as the Canadian winner of the Griffin Poetry Prize, the world's most lucrative for verse,during last night's gala bash in the Distillery District.
Moritz, the author of more than 15 collections of verse, took home the $50,000 award for his current collection, The Sentinel, emerging from an impressive and noticeably fresh field that also included past Trillium Prize winner Kevin Connolly for his fourth book, Revolver, and Jeramy Dodds for his much praised debut, Crabwise to the Hounds.
"I'd especially like to thank readers – and included in that my publishers, House of Anansi," Moritz said.
An equal $50,000 award went to the international winner, U.S. poet C.D. Wright, whose Rising, Falling, Hovering triumphed over collections by countryman Dean Young, Irish poet Derek Mahon and Scottish writer Mick Imlah, who died earlier this year of Lou Gehrig's disease.
"This is the best party in the world," Wright said through tears of joy. "I wouldn't have missed it for anything in the world."
Had a great poetry group at Gary's place last night. Good poems all around. Terrific late summer-like weather. We all sat at a picnic table amid his garden of perennials and fruit trees, a pond with gold fish (netted over to protect it from the neighborhood herons). It is such a great group.
But just as we were all getting up to leave, a huge storm rolled in, thick heavy black clouds, gusts of wind, the temp dropping about twenty degrees. It was really intense, and a little spooky. Thunder and lightning weather, without the thunder and lightning (so far). Hope everybody made it home safe!