Margaret Avison

(April 23, 1918 – July 31, 2007 / Galt, Ontario)

Margaret Avison
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Margaret Avison (April 23, 1918 – July 31, 2007) was a Canadian poet who twice won Canada's Governor General's Award and has also won its Griffin Poetry Prize. "Her work has often been praised for the beauty of its language and images."

Avison was born in Galt, Ontario, and grew up in Regina, Saskatchewan, and Calgary, Alberta, the daughter of a Methodist minister. She attended Alma College, located in St. Thomas, Ontario, ca. 1935. As a teenager she was hospitalized for anorexia.

She attended Victoria University in the University of Toronto, getting her B.A. in 1940 (and returning to pick up her M.A. in 1965). She began publishing poetry in the college ... more »

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Best Poem of Margaret Avison

New Year's Poem

The Christmas twigs crispen and needles rattle
Along the window-ledge.
A solitary pearl
Shed from the necklace spilled at last week's party
Lies in the suety, snow-luminous plainness
Of morning, on the window-ledge beside them.
And all the furniture that circled stately
And hospitable when these rooms were brimmed
With perfumes, furs, and black-and-silver
Crisscross of seasonal conversation, lapses
Into its previous largeness.
I remember
Anne's rose-sweet gravity, and the stiff grave
Where cold so little can contain;
I ...

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