Hollyhock Presenters

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Our presenters are curated for their quality, depth, integrity, and alignment with our educational purpose. Since 1982, a distinguished faculty of authors, educators, activists, artists, performers, and practitioners have shared their work at our Cortes Island campus and in Vancouver.

People smiling at Activate 2023 Hollyhock Leadership Institute

Susan Musgrave

Grief is the willingness to be claimed by a story bigger than ourselves. Susan Musgrave’s most recent book of poetry, Exculpatory Lilies, is her response to the death of her partner, Stephen Reid, in 2018, and their daughter, Sophie, in September 2021, of an accidental overdose of Fentanyl and Benzos. Exculpatory Lilies was a finalist for the Griffin Poetry Prize, the Governor General’s Award for Poetry, 2023, and the Derek Walcott Poetry Prize.

Susan Musgrave has published more than 35 books and received awards in six categories — poetry, novels, non-fiction, food writing, editing and books for children. She teaches poetry in UBC’s School of Poetry (online) and lives on Haida Gwaii where she owns and manages Copper Beech House.

“Her artistic presence over the past 40 years has helped create who we are,” wrote Patrick Lane. “She is as important to us as Emily Carr.”