Anne Compton

Anne Compton was born in PEI in 1947 and taught for many years at the Saint John campus of the University of New Brunswick. Because so much of her creative work was conceived in and draws upon New Brunswick, she is included in this curriculum, though critics (and perhaps the poet herself) would place her sympathies with the Island. Regardless, those quibbles as to her placement reveal her worth: she is so good that many want to claim her as their own. Compton grew up in a large farming family whose expansive acreage was the first of her intimacies. She learned the deep grammars of woods, waters, and farm so well that her creative work naturally bent to that knowledge. Over four collections of poetry, the first Opening the Island (2002), she has crafted a body of work in which family, memory, and landscape meld to create a genealogy of place, that genealogy resplendent with births, deaths, trees, houses, moods, fields, tides, and weathers. That emphasis puts her in a line with New Brunswick’s Tantramar poets – she draws on John Thompson’s ghazal form to aid her associative constructions – but also as a practitioner of a uniquely Maritime eco-feminism. Widely celebrated for her work, she has won numerous awards, including the Governor General’s Literary Award for Poetry for Processional (2005).

For the full Author Page on Compton, click here.


The linked Author Page contains the poems "4 April, 1991," "The Dinner Party," "Heating the House," "Property Rights, June," "Jacklight," "The tree in winter," and "What the construction worker said."