Chasing The Poem’s Poetry Night with Jónína Kirton + annie ross + Justene Dion-Glowa + Natalie T

On Friday, June 9th at 6:00pm, join Massy Arts Society + Massy Books for Chasing The Poem, an evening of poetry reading that will present to the audience poems created in Massy Arts’ latest poetry workshop marathon held in April, taught by an all-Indigenous poet panel to demystify poetry writing, to incite imagination, and to address political and poetic points of view through poetic literature.

Hosted by poetry mentors Jónína Kirton, annie ross, and Justene Dion-Glowa, this event will also present reading performances by emerging writers Natalie Tin Yin Gan, Rebecca Lanoue, Kris Kaila, Willo Prince, Lucy Yang, Jacqueline Chia, and Sideah Alladice.


Jónína Kirton, an Icelandic and Red River Métis poet was born in Portage la Prairie, Manitoba, the traditional lands of the Očhéthi Šakówiŋ, Anishinaabeg and the Métis. She was sixty-one when she received the 2016 Vancouver’s Mayor’s Arts Award for an Emerging Artist in the Literary Arts category. Her second collection of poetry, An Honest Woman, was a finalist in the 2018 Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize. Her third book, Standing in a River of Time, was released in 2022. She is a citizen of the Métis Nation of BC and currently lives in New Westminster BC, the unceded territory of the Halkomelem speaking peoples.

annie ross is the daughter of a strong traditional Maya mother, auntie, and WWII veteran father (Sydney Mines, NS). She began education at home with plants, animals, art, Indigenous handwork, storytelling, and history in Compton, California. annie ross is a poet, weaver, sculptor, printmaker, researcher, and educator working with Simon Fraser University (SFU) in Vancouver. Her poems have appeared in the Capilano Review (Fall 2017, Spring 2022), Canadian Literature: A Quarterly of Criticism and Review (September 2017), The Maynard (Spring 2017, Fall 2015), Yellow Medicine Review (Fall 2014), Project Intersect Clarion Call (September 2014) and Quills Poetry Magazine (September 2014). Her work is part of various anthologies including Rachel Roses anthology Sustenance (Anvil Press, 2017) and Turtle Island to Abya Yala: Native American Women’s Poetry Anthology (Malinalli Press, 2011); as well, it has been launched at The National Museum of Animals and Society (Los Angeles 2014).

Justene Dion-Glowa is a queer Métis creative, beadwork artist and poet born in Winnipeg and currently living in Secwepemcú’lecw. They have worked in the human services field for nearly a decade. They are also an art instructor working with Indigenous youth in their downtime and provides workshops on healing grief and trauma through literary and arts endeavors. Their microchap, TEETH, is available from Ghost City Press. Trailer Park Shakes is their first full length poetry book, and is available from Brick Books.

Lucy Yang (she/her) writes and teaches on the traditional and unceded territories of the Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish) and Səl̓ílwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations. Her work has appeared in literary and education publications, exploring feminist diasporic identities and intercultural pedagogy; she is a finalist for the 2021 Foster Poetry Prize. She holds degrees in English literature and literacy education at The University of British Columbia.

Kris Kaila is a queer Punjabi Canadian poet writer, book reviewer & blogger. She enjoys dabbling in art, working on jigsaw puzzles and cross-stitching/embroidery while drinking coffee or tea from her vast mug collection. Her poetry has been published in Usawa Literary Review, Salt & Citrus Zine, That Gray Zine and in anthologies, and forthcoming with Maza Collective Arts. On rainy days in beautiful Vancouver, BC, Kris is usually reading, in workshops or watching true crime docs.

Rebecca Lanoue is a Metis born in north eastern Saskatchewan. who received her bachelor of education through the Saskatchewan Urban Native Teachers Program at the U of S in Saskatoon with specialization in Native Studies and Art. For many years while raising her children, she worked as a substitute teacher and as an Interior Decorator. Currently Rebecca resides in Kelowna, BC and works part-time with her husband at their kitchen cabinet company. For the past twenty years Rebecca has written as a way of healing, through journalling, poetry and song. She is currently working on a memoir that will be turned into an interractive musical theatre production using much of the work she has amassed to date.

Jacqueline Chia is a jazz musician, recovering academic and aspiring ethnobotanist. She has been writing poems since her teenage years and it’s been years since she’s sent a poem out to be published. In 2017, she co-organised a poetry reading called “Crush” at Gladday Bookstore. Since then she’s been focusing on more creative writing as she moves away from academic work. Jacqueline resides in Tkaronto.