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Biography

Tim Lilburn is author of six books of poems, including Names of God, From the Great Above She Opened Her Ear to the Great Below, with visual artist Susan Shantz, Tourist to Ecstasy, Moosewood Sandhills, To the River, Kill-site, Desire Never Leaves, and his latest, Orphic Politics. He has been nominated for the Governor General’s Award in Literature twice: in 1989, for Tourist to Ecstasy, and in 2003, when he received the award for Kill-site. From 1995 to 1998 he was Grain Magazine’s Poetry Editor.

His poems have appeared in a number of anthologies, including Twentieth Century Poetry and Poetics, Open Field: Contemporary Canadian Poets (US), Contemporary Canadian Poetry (Bosnia), Poetry International, 15 Canadian Poets x 3, and A Matter of Spirit, Recovery of the Sacred in Contemporary Canadian Poetry. His poems have also been published individually in literary journals across Canada and internationally: The Malahat Review; Descant; Fiddlehead; Grain; Quarry; Prism International; Brick Magazine; Arc; The Literary Review of Canada; The Walrus; Poetry Australia; Today/Jintian (China); Manoa: A Pacific Journal of International Writing (University of Hawaii); Literatura NaSwiecie (Poland); Poetry Wales; and Resurgence (UK).

Poet & Essayist Tim LilburnHe is the author of the essay collection Living in the World as if It Were Home, a book of essays on ecology and desire, and the editor of, and a contributor to, two influential essay collections on poetics, Poetry and Knowing, and Thinking and Singing: Poetry and the Practice of Philosophy. His essays have appeared in many publications, including Fiddlehead, Prairie Fire, Brick Magazine, The New Quarterly, Poetry Canada Review and Cross-Canada Writers Quarterly. His chief scholarly interests are ecology, philosophy, writing and religious studies—in particular patristics and Taoism. His latest essay collection is Going Home, published by House of Anansi Press in the fall of 2008. This book continues and deepens the meditation begun in Living in the World as if It Were Home.

Prior to his appointment as professor at the University of Victoria’s Creative Writing Department in 2004, Tim taught at the St. Peter's College, Banff School of Fine Arts, the Sage Hill Writing Experience, the University of Saskatchewan, and Wilfred Laurier University. In 1989 Tim was the writer-in-residence for the University of Western Ontario; in 1995, at St. Mary’s University; in 1998, at the Regina Public Library; and in 1999 at the University of Alberta. He also taught in Nigeria at General Murtala Mohammed Secondary School from 1974-76.

In the last twenty-five years Tim has given readings and lectures at universities, libraries, festivals and cafés across Canada, and as far as Berlin, Paris, and Xinjiang, China. He has also been a frequent guest on radio and television, including CFUV, CBC Radio and Vision TV. In 2004 he appeared with Rudy Wiebe, Jan Zwicky, Thomas Wharton, and Russel Thornton, as a panellist on landscape and writing at the Victoria Writers’ Festival. In 1999 he coordinated, with poets Don McKay and Jan Zwicky, “St. Peter’s Colloquium on Nature Writing and Wilderness Thought,” a ten day discussion and editorial consultation with poets, philosophers, environmental scientists, curators, visual artists, choreographers, and dancers. Recent lectures include: “Long Poems as Instruments of Discernment,” “Poetry and Philosophy as Equivalent Realms,” and “Listening to the Land,” an advanced class in choreography.

Tim’s work has been translated into French, Chinese, Serbian, and Polish. In addition to the Governor General’s Award, Tim’s work has received the Canadian Authors Association Award, the Saskatchewan Book of the Year Award, and the Saskatchewan Nonfiction Award. He is currently at work on a new collection of essays and a long performable poem on a dreamland he calls Rupert’s Land.