W ell, hello there! A little introduction: I’m Alice Burdick. I was born and raised in Toronto, and have lived also in Espanola, Ontario (for a year!), and in Vancouver and Robert’s Creek. B.C., before moving out to Halifax in 2002. Now I live in beautiful Mahone Bay, Nova Scotia. It’s a tiny town with an excess of churches and 900 residents (in the summer).

Today I went to the Biscuit Eater to buy some bread from La Vendéenne, a local organic French bakery. Fridays are market days in Mahone Bay. The Biscuit Eater is a great local café and bookstore — it hosts many readings and events. The first person I saw read there was Mark Strand. He stood in the doorway of the patio, with curtains billowing out around him, while the audience sat outside. It was a great reading. I work at a seasonal gallery here, and in the winter months I stay in a lot. Hazel is now almost 21 months, so she keeps me busy by having me read books to her repeatedly.

Right now Richard Scarry is a favourite. I’m trying to teach her the word sloth. In early February I went to Springhill Penitentiary with my friend and fellow poet Alison Smith. Her mother is involved with restorative justice, and Alison has led some writing workshops there over the past year or so. We introduced the participants (two small groups) to the Exquisite Corpse (but I didn’t call it that). It was a pretty wonderful experience — these guys are very curious about different forms of poetry and, interestingly, were more receptive than many audiences I’ve seen. In early April I’ll be heading back out there with Alison and John Wall Barger to do some readings for and alongside the inmates. Poetry Month on the inside!

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