Other literary forms

(British and Irish Poetry, Revised Edition)

Earle Birney (BUR-nee), like many contemporary Canadian poets, both created and explicated the tradition of his country’s writings. He wrote or edited more than two dozen volumes, including poetry, fiction, drama, criticism, and anthologies, as well as nearly a hundred short stories, pamphlets, essays, reviews, and articles. The novels Turvey (1949), which won the Stephen Leacock medal for humor, and Down the Long Table (1955) are well worth reading for an appreciation of Birney’s sense of style. Of his critical articles and books, The Creative Writer (1966), The Cow Jumped over the Moon: The Writing and Reading of Poetry (1972), and Spreading Time (1980) are the most notable collections, for they offer invaluable insights into Birney’s poetry.