Creator: Catherine Banks (playwright)
Nominator: Reina Green
In this play, published in 2012 by Playwrights Canada Press, middle-aged Margaret reflects on her sexual desire and the suppression of her creativity through the metaphor of Wallace Stevens’ “Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird.” The play turns the usual understanding of “poetic muse” on its head as muse Wallace Stevens, with his bullying, confrontational ways, both inspires Margaret and paralyzes her artistic drive—even as he forces her to recognize emotions she had previously suppressed. Readings of the play have been held as far away as Catalonia, where the text was translated into Catalan. It was staged in Halifax by White Rooster Theatre and HomeFirst Productions in 2014.
Jury Comments: A fascinating, affecting exploration of the relationship between sexuality and creativity, elegantly constructed.
Creator Catherine Banks lives in Nova Scotia.