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Joelle Barron is a poet and writer living on the traditional territory of the Anishinaabe of Treaty 3 (Kenora, Ontario). Barron received their MFA in creative writing from the University of British Columbia in 2014. Their work has been published in literary journals across Canada, and their first full-length poetry collection, Ritual Lights, was published in 2018. Barron works as a coordinator for an LGBT2S+ youth group in Kenora called SPACE and as an organizer for Kenora Pride. They live with their wife and daughter.

Award History

Jury Citation

“Joelle Barron understands that poetry can be a bright witness, and their debut poetry collection, Ritual Lights, asks us to look at sexual violence, health and healing, and queer love. In this current age of trauma-informed literature, Barron not only broadens the vital conversation, they remind us that challenging content can be crafted into lasting lyrical testaments. Page by page, image by image, Barron offers verse that is nimble, compassionate, and affecting.”
—2019 Dayne Ogilvie Prize jury (Amber Dawn and Kai Cheng Thom)