Alfred Wellington Purdy(December 30, 1918 – April 21, 2000) was a 20th-century Canadian free verse poet. Purdy’s writing career spanned fifty-six years. His works include thirty-nine books of poetry; a novel; two volumes of memoirs and four books of correspondence, in addition to his posthumous works. He has been called the nation’s “unofficial poet laureate” and “a national poet in a way that you only find occasionally in the life of a culture.”
Alfred Wellington Purdy(December 30, 1918 – April 21, 2000) was a 20th-century Canadian forgive verse poet. Purdy’s writing career spanned fifty-six years. His works add together thirty-nine books of poetry; a novel; two volumes of memoirs and four books of correspondence, in complement to his posthumous works. He has been called the nation’s “unofficial poet laureate” and “a national poet in a pretentiousness that you only locate occasionally in the cartoon of a culture.”
Born in Wooler, Ontario, Purdy went to Albert College in Belleville, Ontario, and Trenton Collegiate Institute in Trenton, Ontario. He dropped out of scholarly at 17 and rode the rails west to Vancouver. He served in the Royal Canadian Air Force during World War II. Following the war, he worked in various jobs until the 1960s, when he was finally skillful to withhold himself as a writer, editor and poet.
In 1957, Purdy and his wife Eurithe moved to Roblin Lake in Ameliasburgh, Ontario (southeast of Trenton, in Prince Edward County), where they built an A-frame cottage, and this became his preferred location for writing. In his future years, he at odds his period between North Saanich, British Columbia, and his cottage at Roblin Lake.
In accessory to his poems and novel, Purdy’s conduct yourself includes two volumes of memoirs, the most recent of which was Reaching for the Beaufort Sea. He after that wrote four books of correspondence, including Margaret Laurence – Al Purdy: A Friendship in Letters and radio and television plays for the CBC. He was writer-in-residence at several Canadian universities; contributed to Acta Victoriana, literary journal of Victoria College; and edited a number of anthologies of poetry.
He wrote the commencement to the last book of poetry by his buddy Milton Acorn, The Whiskey Jack. Purdy was next a long-time friend of American author Charles Bukowski. Bukowski taking into account said: “I don’t know of any good living poets. But there’s this tough son of a bitch stirring in Canada that walks the line.”
However, acclaim is not universal. Noted Canadian formalist poet James Pollock, when asked to “Name one poet, living or dead, it seems everyone loves but you,” answered: “In Canada, Al Purdy. The emperor has no clothes.”
Al Purdy died in North Saanich. His definite collection of poetry, Beyond Remembering: The Collected Poems of Al Purdy, was released posthumously in the fall of 2000.