Barry Dempster was born in Scarborough, Ontario, and worked at both Children’s Aid and the Queen Street Mental Health Centre in Toronto. He edited Poetry Canada Review for six years and has published books of poetry, three works of fiction, and a children’s book. He and his wife Karen live in Holland Marsh, north of Toronto.
Jeffrey Donaldson (University of Toronto Quarterly, “Letters in Canada,” 2000) speaks of Dempster’s “sharp eye for the potentially redemptive, metaphorical significance of everyday objects.”
“His poetics combine spiritual context and erotic imagery; he blends Christian and pagan; imagery of lust and absence” (Anne Burke, League of Canadian Poets website).
Barbara Pell (Journal of Canadian Poetry) characterizes Dempster’s poetry as “strong, assured, and often witty.”
Allan Brown described this collection as “a continuing study of self and society that is unified chiefly by his familiar, mildly expressionistic style, and by his indefatigable honesty.”
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Barry is a contributor to Anniversary Poems (2013).