The Collected Letters of Al Purdy
In this fascinating and funny collection of correspondence, Canada’s greatest poet lets it all hang out in spirited private exchanges with Pierre Trudeau, Carol Shields, Earle Birney, Anna Porter, Charles Bukowski, Margaret Laurence, Margaret Atwood, Michael Ondaatje, Gwendolyn MacEwan, Jack McClelland, Northrup Frye, William Golding, Darryl Sittler, Alistair MacLeod, Susan Musgrave, Irving Layton, Lynn Crosbie, George Bowering, Anthony Burgess, Joseph Brodsky and many other notables. Yours, Al is an uncensored, intimate glimpse into the life of Canada’s most celebrated poet. Al Purdy’s personal letters present the Can-lit scene as an ongoing conversation between members of a tight, supportive community spanning generations of talented writers. From generous encouragement to brash, unsparing insults–it’s all here, with responses from many recipients of his letters. Encompassing more than fifty years, the letters show Purdy at his best–and his worst.
"There isn't a poet in Canada who doesn't owe something to Purdy ... an intimate backstage history of CanLit ... replete with the lively scatological terminology writers actually use when discussing one another's work."- John Moore, <i>Vancouver Sun</i>