Billy-Ray Belcourt on winning the $65,000 Griffin Poetry Prize

Belcourt joins Tom Power live in the q studio to talk about winning the 2018 Griffin Poetry Prize for his debut collection of poetry, This Wound is a World.
Griffin Poetry Prize winner Billy-Ray Belcourt with Tom Power in the q studio in Toronto, Ont. (Vivian Rashotte/CBC)

Originally published on June 8, 2018

Last night, the Griffin Poetry Prize — one of Canada's most prestigious literary awards — was given out. Every year, the prize goes to one Canadian and one international poet, who are each awarded $65,000, in addition to a much wider audience for their poetry. 

Billy-Ray Belcourt is a young poet from Driftpile Cree Nation in Alberta. He won for his poetry collection This Wound is a World. Today, he joined Tom Power live in the q studio to talk about his big win. 

Throughout the week, we invited each of the three Griffin Poetry Prize finalists to read a poem from their collection. Listen to them read those poems below.

Billy-Ray Belcourt (Frontenac House)

Billy-Ray Belcourt, Ode to Northern Alberta from This Wound is a World (Frontenac House)

Aisha Sasha John (McClelland & Stewart)

Aisha Sasha John, Regardless from I have to live. (McClelland & Stewart)

Donato Mancini (Talonbooks)

Donato Mancini, Untitled from Same Diff (Talonbooks)

Produced by Vanessa Greco

Click the listen link above to hear the full interview with Griffin Poetry Prize winner Billy-Ray Belcourt.

Miss an episode of CBC q? Download our podcast.


To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.