Gary Barwin

Photo credit: George Qua-Enoo

Photo credit: George Qua-Enoo

Coming Fall 2019.  Pre-order now .

Coming Fall 2019. Pre-order now.

The author of twenty-two books of poetry, fiction and books for children, Gary Barwin is a writer, musician and multimedia artist from Hamilton, Ontario and the author of the nationally bestselling novel Yiddish for Pirates (Penguin Random House Canada), which won the Stephen Leacock Medal for Humour, the Canadian Jewish Literary Award, was shortlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize and the Governor General’s Award. His New and Selected Poems, edited by Alessandro Porco (Wolsak and Wynn) is forthcoming in 2019, as is A Cemetery for Holes (poetry with Tom Prime; Gordon Hill Press).

A finalist for the National Magazine Awards (poetry), he is a three-time recipient of the Hamilton Literary Award for Poetry, has also received the Hamilton Arts Award for Literature and has co-won the bpNichol Chapbook Award and the K.M. Hunter Arts Award. He was one of the judges for the 2017 CBC Poetry Prize. Barwin has been writer-in-residence at Western University, Hillfield Strathallan College, McMaster University and the Hamilton Public Library. He will be the Edna Staebler writer-in-residence at Wilfrid Laurier University in Winter 2019. 

His writing and recordings have been published/released in hundreds of magazine and journals internationally – from Reader’s Digest to Granta. His interactive writing installation using old typewriters and guitar processors was featured during 2016–2017 at the Art Gallery of Hamilton and he has performed his writing and music with members of the Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra on their regular season. He is on the organizing committee for Hamilton’s LitLive Series and regularly presents, performs and exhibits in the city. 

A PhD in music composition, Barwin has taught at McMaster University, Mohawk College and Hillfield Strathallan College. He has been performing his text and sound-based poetry and music since the 1980s as a solo artist and as part of a variety of ensembles including projects with Stuart Ross, Gregory Betts and Lillian Allen. He has performed and broadcast his work in China, Japan, the US and Europe. His writing, music, media works and visuals have also been presented and broadcast internationally. Barwin lives in Hamilton and at

Titles by Gary Barwin

For It Is a Pleasure and a Surprise to Breathe: New and Selected Poems (2019)

No TV for Woodpeckers (2017)