Canada Famous Poets from Canada

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List of notable or famous poets from Canada, with bios and photos, including the top poets born in Canada and even some popular poets who immigrated to Canada. If you're trying to find out the names of famous Canadian poets then this list is the perfect resource for you. These poets are among the most prominent in their field, and information about each well-known poet from Canada is included when available.

This list contains people like Leonard Cohen and Bif Naked.

This historic poets from Canada list can help answer the questions "Who are some Canadian poets of note?" and "Who are the most famous poets from Canada?" These prominent poets of Canada may or may not be currently alive, but what they all have in common is that they're all respected Canadian poets.

Use this list of renowned Canadian poets to discover some new poets that you aren't familiar with. Don't forget to share this list by clicking one of the social media icons at the top or bottom of the page. (101 items)

1
Al Purdy is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
Dec. at 82 (1918-2000) Alfred Wellington Purdy, OC OOnt was a 20th-century Canadian free verse poet. Purdy's writing career spanned fifty-six years. His works include thirty-nine books of poetry; a novel; two volumes ...more

2
Alan Sullivan is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
Dec. at 79 (1868-1947) Edward Alan Sullivan was a Canadian poet and author of short stories. He is noted for his 1935 historical adventure novel The Great Divide, which depicts the construction of the Canadian Pacific ...more

3
Alden Nowlan is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
Dec. at 50 (1933-1983) Alden Albert Nowlan was a critically acclaimed Canadian poet, novelist, and playwright.

4
Allison Hedge Coke is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 59 Allison Adelle Hedge Coke was primarily raised in North Carolina with some time on the Great Plains & Canada. Her debut book, Dog Road Woman, won the American Book Award and was the first ...more

5
Anne Carson is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 67 Anne Carson is a Canadian poet, essayist, translator and professor of Classics. Carson lived in Montreal for several years and taught at McGill University, the University of Michigan, and at ...more

6
Anne Compton is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 71 Anne Compton is a Canadian poet, critic, and anthologist.

7
Anne Michaels is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 59 Anne Michaels is a Canadian poet and novelist.

8
Anne Szumigalski is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
Dec. at 77 (1922-1999) Anne Szumigalski, SOM was a Canadian poet.

9
Arthur John Arbuthnott Stringe... is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
Dec. at 76 (1874-1950) Arthur Stringer was a Canadian novelist, screenwriter, and poet who later moved to the United States. He published 45 works of fiction and 15 other books, in addition to writing numerous ...more

10
Bif Naked is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 46 Bif Naked is a Canadian singer-songwriter, actress and motivational speaker.

11
Bliss Carman is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
Dec. at 68 (1861-1929) Bliss Carman FRSC was a Canadian poet who lived most of his life in the United States, where he achieved international fame. He was acclaimed as Canada's poet laureate during his later years. In ...more

12
Chandra Mayor is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 45 Chandra Mayor, is a Canadian poet and novelist whose writings, among other topics, dive into worlds of urban and alternative cultures. She resides in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

13
Charles Lillard is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
Dec. at 53 (1944-1997) Charles "Red" Lillard was a poet and historian specializing in British Columbia, Southeast Alaska and the Pacific Northwest. He was born in Long Beach, California and raised in ...more

14
Daniel Scott Tysdal is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
Daniel Scott Tysdal age 39 Daniel Scott Tysdal is a Canadian poet whose work approaches the lyric mode with an experimental spirit. In June 2007, Tysdal received the ReLit Award for Poetry. Tysdal was born in Moose Jaw, ...more

15
Dave Clark is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
Dave Clark is a Canadian musician from Etobicoke, Ontario.

16
David Donnell is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 78 David Donnell a Canadian poet and writer, Donnell moved to Toronto in 1958 before publishing his first book. Poems, During this period Donnell frequented the Bohemian Embassy, where Margaret ...more

17
David Zieroth is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 71 Dale Zieroth is a Canadian poet. He won the Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize in 1999 for How I Joined Humanity at Last, and the Governor General's Award for English language poetry in 2009 for The ...more

18
Dennis Lee is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 78 Dennis Beynon Lee, OC, MA is a Canadian poet, teacher, editor, and critic born in Toronto, Ontario. He is also a children's writer, well known for his book of children's rhymes, Alligator Pie.

19
Dionne Brand is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 65 Dionne Brand is a Canadian poet, novelist, essayist and documentarian. She was Toronto's third Poet Laureate from September 2009 to November 2012.

20
Don Coles is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 91 Donald L. Coles, also known as Don Coles, is a Canadian poet and a novelist. Coles won the 1993 Governor General's Award for English poetry for his collection Forests of the Medieval World and ...more

21
Don Domanski is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 67 Don Rusu Domanski is a Canadian poet who lives in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Domanski was born and raised on Cape Breton Island. Published and reviewed internationally, his work has been translated ...more

22
Don Francks is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 86 Donald Harvey Francks or Iron Buffalo is a Canadian actor, vocalist and jazz musician.

23
Don McKay is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 75 Don McKay, CM is a Canadian poet, editor, and educator. Born in Owen Sound, Ontario and raised in Cornwall, McKay was educated at the University of Western Ontario and the University of Wales, ...more

24
Douglas Gordon Jones is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 89 Douglas Gordon Jones is a Canadian poet, translator and educator. Born in Bancroft, Ontario, Jones was educated at a private school in Quebec's Eastern Townships, at McGill University and at ...more

25
Douglas LePan is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
Dec. at 84 (1914-1998) Douglas Valentine LePan, OC, FRSC was a Canadian diplomat, poet, novelist and professor of literature. Born in Toronto, Ontario, LePan was educated at the University of Toronto, at Harvard, and ...more

26
E. D. Blodgett is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 83 Edward Dickinson Blodgett is a Canadian poet, literary critic, and translator who won the Governor General's Award for poetry in 1996 for his collection Apostrophes: Woman at a Piano.

27
Émile Nelligan is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
Dec. at 62 (1879-1941) Émile Nelligan was a francophone poet from Quebec, Canada.

28
Erin Mouré is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 62 Erín Moure is a writer, poet and translator.

29
F. R. Scott is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
Dec. at 86 (1899-1985) Francis Reginald Scott, CC, commonly known as Frank Scott or F. R. Scott, was a Canadian poet, intellectual and constitutional expert. He helped found the first Canadian social democratic party, ...more

30
Frances Itani is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 75 Frances Susan Itani is a Canadian fiction writer, poet and essayist. She is a Member of the Order of Canada. Itani was born in Belleville, Ontario and grew up in Quebec. She studied nursing in ...more

31
Fred Wah is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 79 Frederick James Wah, OC, is a Canadian poet, novelist, scholar and former Canadian Parliamentary Poet Laureate.

32
George Bowering is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 82 George Harry Bowering, OC, OBC is a prolific Canadian novelist, poet, historian, and biographer. He has served as Canada's Parliamentary Poet Laureate. He was born in Penticton, British ...more

33
George Elliott Clarke is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 58 George Elliott Clarke, OC ONS is a Canadian poet and playwright. His work largely explores and chronicles the experience and history of the Black Canadian communities of Nova Scotia and New ...more

34
George Frederick Cameron is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
Dec. at 31 (1854-1885) George Frederick Cameron was a Canadian poet, lawyer, and journalist, best known for the libretto for the operetta Leo, the Royal Cadet.

35
George Woodcock is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
Dec. at 83 (1912-1995) George Woodcock was a Canadian writer of political biography and history, an anarchist thinker, an essayist and literary critic. He was also a poet and published several volumes of travel ...more

36
Gwendolyn MacEwen is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
Dec. at 46 (1941-1987) Gwendolyn Margaret MacEwen was a Canadian poet and novelist. A "sophisticated, wide-ranging and thoughtful writer," she published more than 20 books in her life. "A sense of magic ...more

37
Heather Spears is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 84 Heather Spears is a Canadian poet, novelist, and artist living in Denmark. Educated at the University of British Columbia and the Vancouver School of Art, Spears emigrated to Denmark in 1962 ...more

38
Herménégilde Chiasson is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 72 Herménégilde Chiasson, ONB is a noted Canadian poet and playwright of Acadian origin. Born in Saint-Simon, New Brunswick, he was the 29th Lieutenant Governor of New Brunswick ...more

39
Ibi Kaslik is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 44 Ibolya "Ibi" Kaslik is a Canadian novelist, freelance journalist, and teacher of creative writing at the University of Toronto.

40
Irving Layton is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
Dec. at 94 (1912-2006) Irving Peter Layton, OC was a Romanian-born Canadian poet. He was known for his "tell it like it is" style which won him a wide following, but also made him enemies. As T. Jacobs notes ...more

41
Jacob Scheier is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
Jacob Scheier age 38 Jacob Scheier is a Canadian poet. His debut poetry collection, More to Keep Us Warm, was published by ECW Press in 2007 and was named the winner of the 2008 Governor General's Award for English ...more

42
Jacques Godbout is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 84 Jacques Godbout, CQ is a Canadian novelist, essayist, children's writer, journalist, filmmaker and poet. By his own admission a bit of a dabbler, Godbout has become one of the most important ...more

43
Jai West is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
Jai West is an actor, poet of French Canadian and Japanese descent born in Vancouver, British Columbia and currently based in Tokyo, Japan. He is best known for his work on screen as manic ...more

44
Jalal Barzanji is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 64 Jalal Barzanji is a contemporary Kurdish poet and writer. He has served on the board of Writers' Union and was Executive Director of Ministry of Culture in Iraqi Kurdistan. He left ...more

45
James McIntyre is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
James McIntyre Dec. at 78 (1828-1906) James McIntyre, called The Cheese Poet, was a Canadian poet. McIntyre was born in Forres, Scotland and came to Canada in 1841 at the age of 14. He worked as a hired hand to begin with, ...more

46
Jamie Reid is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
Jamie Reid age 76 Jamie Reid is a Canadian poet, writer, and arts organizer/activist. He was born in Timmins, Ontario and came of age on the west coast of Canada. Reid co-founded the influential poetry journal ...more

47
Jan Zwicky is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 62 Jan Zwicky is a Canadian philosopher, poet, essayist, and musician. She received her BA from the University of Calgary and earned her PhD at the University of Toronto in 1981 where her studies ...more

48
Jane Eaton Hamilton is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 63 Jane Eaton Hamilton is a Canadian short story writer, visual artist, poet and photographer.

49
Jane Siberry is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 62 Jane Siberry is a Canadian singer-songwriter, known for such hits as "Mimi on the Beach", "I Muse Aloud", "One More Colour" and "Calling All Angels". She ...more

50
Jo Walton is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list Famous Poets from Canada
age 53 Jo Walton is a Welsh-Canadian fantasy and science fiction writer and poet. She won the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer in 2002 and the World Fantasy award for her novel Tooth and Claw ...more