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Council supporter P.K. Page passes away

Poet, novelist and painter P.K. Page died yesterday at the age of 93 at her home in Victoria.

Page, a member of the Council of Canadians, once described us as “the one organization that fights for this country.”

The Spring 2006 issue of Canadian Perspectives reported that, “P.K. Page might be one of the only writers in Canada to win a major literary award – and promptly ask to have it revoked.”

“The Governor General Award-winning poet (had been) presented with the Terasen Lifetime Achievement Award for an Outstanding Literary Career in British Columbia. But when Page heard that Terasen had been sold to Texas-based Kinder Morgan, Inc., she asked to have her name removed from a plaque on the Writer’s Walk at the Vancouver Public Library.”

“Prior to the sale of Terasen, Page had written to the government urging them not to sell the Canadian-owned utility. ‘I said that if the deal went through I would ask that my name be removed from the plaque,’ said Page. ‘Well, the deal went through.’ Page then donated the prize money to the Council of Canadians (which had campaigned against the sale of Terasen).”

It has been reported that Page would want to be remembered for her poem ‘Planet Earth’. In part, that poem reads:

“It has to be loved the way a laundress loves her linens, the way she moves her hands caressing the fine muslins knowing their warp and woof, like a lover coaxing, or a mother praising.

The rivers and little streams with their hidden cresses and pale-coloured pebbles and their fool’s gold must be washed and starched or shined into brightness, the sheets of lake water smoothed with the hand and the foam of the oceans pressed into neatness.”

You can read the full poem at http://nexus.typepad.com/nexus/2003/09/planet_earth_by.html.

To read more about the life of Patricia Kathleen Page, go to http://www.cbc.ca/arts/books/story/2010/01/14/obit-page-pk.html.

The Canadian Perspectives article can be read at http://canadians.org/publications/CP/2006/spring/CP_Spring06_16.pdf.