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Library News

Burlington Lyrics & Poetry Festival Lineup Announced

In April, during National Poetry Month, libraries, schools, publishers, and booksellers across the country celebrate poetry and its vital place in Canadian culture. Here at Burlington Public Library, we pay tribute to all things poetic during our third annual Burlington Lyrics & Poetry Festival

Whether you’re a poetry lover or simply curious about the power and charm of words, this festival has something for you. This year's events are as educational as they are entertaining, with writers offering intimate workshops and presentations on their creative processes.

"We're thrilled to welcome a lineup of incredibly talented artists, each bringing their unique voice to enrich this year's festival experiences," says Lita Barrie, CEO of Burlington Public Library. "The goal of the Festival is to connect people with the power of words, and we hope everyone will find something that ignites their passion for poetry."

All events are free to attend, whether or not you are a library member. Registration opens at noon on March 20. So, bring your curiosity, creativity, and imagination—and come along on this month-long exploration of lyrics and poetry.

Festival Highlights 

This year’s lineup offers an exciting schedule of presenters, workshops, and activities for all ages, including a feature presentation by Canadian Music Hall of Fame inductee Rik Emmett, lead singer/songwriter/guitarist of Triumph, who wrote some of the most beloved hits of the 1980s. Emmett talks about his new autobiography, Lay It on the Line: A Backstage Pass to Rock Star Adventure, Conflict and Triumph, sharing stories about his family roots, early musical career, and life beyond the stage.

The festival also offers an uplifting evening of poetry reading by Marilyn Lightstone, host of the hugely popular podcast Nocturne, a powerful session with spoken word poet Britta Badour, drawing from her debut collection, Wires that Sputter, a wondrous children’s music event with My Friend Christopher, and a beginner’s guide to poetry appreciation with poet and editor Jim Johnstone. 

Create a Poem, Present a Poem

There’s plenty of opportunity for everyone to create poetry during the festival. For those looking to tap into their own creative expression, Kimiko Horne facilitates an in-person Haiku workshop, and Lynda Monk offers a virtual poetry and journaling session. 

And poetry is everywhere all month at BPL! Whether you're a seasoned poet or just love playing with words, our branches are buzzing with poetic possibilities throughout April. Swing by your local branch and unleash your inner poet at our poetry stations, where you can try blackout poetry or create super-sized poems on our windows. We supply the words—you create the poetic masterpiece!

If you’re already a creator (or enthusiast) of lyrics and poetry and want to share your art with an appreciative audience, mark your calendar for Sunday, April 28, when it’s your turn in the spotlight at the festival’s Open Mic.

View the full Festival lineup