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The Parliamentary
Poet Laureate


Michel Pleau

Michel Pleau, Parliamentary Poet Laureate 2014-2015

On January 7, 2014, the Speaker of the Senate, the Hon. Noël A. Kinsella, and the Speaker of the House of Commons, the Hon. Andrew Scheer, announced the appointment of Michel Pleau as Canada’s next Parliamentary Poet Laureate. Mr. Pleau became Canada’s sixth Poet Laureate, succeeding Mr. Fred Wah, whose term ended December 31, 2013.


Michel Pleau still lives in the neighbourhood of his birth, Saint-Sauveur, in Quebec City’s Lowertown. Pleau has devoted his life to poetry and, since 1992, has published close to a dozen books of poetry and thoughts on the nature of writing. He received the Octave Crémazie Award from the Salon du livre de Québec and the Institut Canadien for his first collection Le corps tombe plus tard, published by Écrits des Forges. He also received the Alphonse Piché Award and the Félix-Antoine Savard Award from the Trois-Rivières International Poetry Festival. Pleau was a finalist for the Émile Nelligan Award for his collection Plus loin que les cendres, published by Éditions du Noroît.

In 2008, Éditions David published Pleau’s book La lenteur du monde, which won the Governor General’s Award for poetry. The English translation, Eternity taking its time, was published by Toronto’s Bookland Press in 2012, and the Spanish translation will be released in 2014 by the Mexican publisher Eternos Malabares. Pleau’s most recent work, Le petit livre de l’été, was a finalist for the Prix des abonnés, awarded by the Bibliothèque de Québec.

Pleau has received grants from the Conseil des arts et lettres du Québec (CALQ) and the Canada Council for the Arts, and was CALQ Writer in Residence in Montréal (2003 and 2008) and the Quebec-Paris Writer in Residence in Paris (April–June 2007).

In addition to his career as a writer and poet, Pleau has taught creative writing for more than 20 years. He is a lecturer in the continuing education department of Laval University, speaks at CEGEPs, and offers poetry workshops for young people through the Quebec government’s cultural education program. Pleau also shares his talents with the general public by teaching introductory and advanced poetry courses through the Fédération du Loisir Littéraire du Québec and the Camp littéraire Félix, respectively. In recent years, he has led writing workshops during the 10-day Trois-Rivières International Poetry Festival.

It is often said that Pleau’s passion and eloquence help others view the world through a poet’s eyes, and he has inspired a new generation of poets by being a resource for them through the Programme de parrainage at the Union des écrivaines et écrivains du Québec and the Programme Première Ovation at the Institut Canadien de Québec.

Many of Pleau’s students have gone on to be published, receive awards and take their own place in the literary world.

In addition to writing and teaching, Pleau also conducts ongoing research into the meaning of poetry. In addition to articles in literary reviews, he has published two essays, Regards sur le poème and L’écriture comme expérience (entretiens avec Jean-Noël Pontbriand). The Service documentaire multimédia described the first essay as “a little book to tuck between Max Jacob’s Advice to a Young Poet and R.M. Rilke’s Letters to a Young Poet.”

Far from living in an ivory tower, Pleau revels in his community and the people around him, constantly seeking to spark their interest in poetry. As a presenter and educator working with children, adults and seniors, Pleau has developed a unique take on people and their experiences.


  • Excerpt from Eternity taking its time
    Eternity taking its time. Toronto: BookLand Press, 2012. Translation © Howard Scott. Original version: La lenteur du monde. Ottawa : Éditions David, 2007
  • Life is Short (or on the Definition of the Haiku)

  • The Light of Haiku

  • Bibliography


    Titles with an asterisk* are available in French only

  • 13 décembre 2015 | Michel Pleau, poète de la lumière*

  • December 1, 2015
    Les Libraires | Michel Pleau honoré!*
    Les éditions David | Michel Pleau remporte le Prix de la personnalité littéraire*

  • November 30, 2015
    Le Soleil | Prix d’excellence des arts et de la culture : hommages tissés serrés*

  • November 2015
    Exit  |  De l’encre sur l’écran*

  • 29 octobre 2015
    ICI Radio-Canada | C’est parti pour le salon du livre d’Halifax*

  • October 26, 2015
    RCF Belgium | Les fous de bassan*

  • April 23, 2015
    ICI Radio Canada | Cultural Segment * (at 29 :40) / French Twist *

  • 20 March 2015
    Studio-Direct | Télévision de Charlevoix, TVC-VM
    Coverage* of the launch of the "Histoire et poésie" edition of the historical magazine Revue d'histoire de Charlevoix

  • 20 March 2015
    Studio-Direct | Télévision de Charlevoix, TVC-VM
    Interview* with Michel Pleau

  • 16 March 2015
    Le Charlevoisien | Interview *

  • March 2015
    Le Sabord, number 100 | Book Review* of "Le ciel de la basse-ville"

  • 6 January 2015
    Les Editions David | "Rencontre with Michel Pleau" *
    Interview during the Salon du livre de Toronto

  • 17 October 2014
    Les Grandes voix francophones | Interview* with Amine Laourou

  • 14 July 2014
    The Literary Press Group of Canada recommends Michel Pleau’s “Eternity taking its time” to celebrate Bastille Day

  • 1 July 2014
    ICI RADIO CANADA | Les voies du retour « La colline parlementaire a son poète officiel. Quel est son rôle? » *

  • 27 June 2014
    Globe and Mail | 147 Reasons to love Canada (reason No # 11)

  • June 2014
    L’autre et le poème* | Dossier Nuit Blanche, No 136

  • June 2014
    Article*| Lettres Québécoises

  • 16 April 2014
    Echo de Shawinigan | Interview*: Michel Pleau à Shawinigan

  • 9 April 2014
    MAtv | Interview on the show Lezarts *

  • 7 April 2014
    Revue Les Libraires | Interview* : Michel Pleau : Se souvenir

  • 31 March 2014
    CPAC | Feature on the Parliamentary Poet Laureate Le saviez-vous : Le poète du Parlement (English voiceover)

  • 29 March 2014
    Le Droit | Litterary Review : La part du Souvenir / Le ciel de la basse-ville *

  • 25 March 2014
    Ottawa Citizen | Poets come to Ottawa from around the world for Versefest

  • 17 March 2014
    Pignon Bleu Workshop : Poetry Day, Quebec City Gabrielle-Roy Library
    ICI RADIO CANADA |De jeunes apprentis poètes *
    Le Soleil | Journée de Poésie

  • 1 March 2014
    Salon du Livre de l’Outaouais : Interview ICI RADIO CANADA | Les Divines tentations *

  • 12 February 2014
    Chronicle Telegraph | Michel Pleau, Canada's Parliamentary Poet Laureate

  • 13 January 2014
    The Poetry Foundation | Canada’s New Poet Laureate in Conversation at Globe and Mail

  • 13 January 2014
    Talon Books | Canada’s Sixth Poet Laureate Announced

  • 12 January 2014
    The Globe and Mail | Canada’s New Poet Laureate: poetry belongs to everyone

    Le Soleil | Michel Pleau, poète officiel du Parlement : une chance à la puissance 10 *

  • 9 January 2014
    Quill & Quire | Michel Pleau named Canada’s new parliamentary poet laureate

  • 8 January 2014
    Peoples Trust Toronto | Michel Pleau is the country’s new poet laureate

  • 8 January 2014
    Les Libraires | Le poète Michel Pleau au Parlement *

  • 8 January 2014
    CBC Radio | Radio Canada cet après-midi (interview) *

  • 8 January 2014
    World News | Michel Pleau, poète du Parlement*
  • 7 January 2014
    Canoë.ca | Michel Pleau nommé poète officiel à Ottawa *

  • 7 January 2014
    CTV News | Quebec’s Michel Pleau named Canada’s new parliamentary poet laureate

  • 7 January 2014
    La Presse | Le Québécois Michel Pleau devient le poète officiel du Parlement, Les caricatures de Bado*

  • 7 January 2014
    Le Devoir | Le Québecois Michel Pleau devient le 6e poète officiel du Parlement *

  • 7 January 2014
    Le Soleil | Le poète de Québec Michel Pleau nommé au Parlement à Ottawa*

  • 7 January 2014
    Metro News | Michel Pleau named Canada’s new poet laureate

  • 7 January 2014
    MacLeans | Quebec’s Michel Pleau named Canada’s new parliamentary poet laureate

  • Nanaimo Daily News
    Quebec's Michel Pleau named Canada's new parliamentary poet laureate
  • Ottawa Citizen
    Quebec's Michel Pleau named Canada's new Parliamentary Poet Laureate

  • 7 January 2014
    The Globe & Mail | Canada names Michel Pleau as new parliamentary poet laureate

  • 7 January 2014
    The Poetry Foundation | Announcing… Canada’s New Parliamentary Poet Laureate!

  • 7 January 2014
    TVA Nouvelles | Michel Pleau nommé poète officiel du Parlement*

  • Vancouver Sun
    Quebec's Michel Pleau named Canada's new parliamentary poet laureate

  • Events

  • 7 December 2015, Sillery, Que.
    Conference  La lumière du haïku* | Group Kukaï-Québec
     (lien vers PDF lumiere du haiku)

  • 2 & 3 December 2015, Ottawa, Ont.
    Governor General’s Literary Awards 2015

  • 30 November 2015, Québec City, Que.
    Recipient of the 2015 Literary Personality* award of  l’Institut Canadien de Québec

  • 28 November 2015, Québec City, Que.
    Conference Comment la poésie m’a sauvé la vie * at  L’Espace Frère-Jérôme

  • 28 to 31 October 2015, Halifax, N.-S.
    Festival des Cultures Francophones TD*; Writing Workshops with children, Salon du livre * and  conference at Dalhousie University.

  • 24 October 2015, Ste-Adèle, Que.
    Nuit Laurentienne de la poésie, Reading

  • 17 and 18 October 2015, Québec City, Que.
    Festival Québec en touteslettres * | Brigade poétique

  • 2 to 11 October 2015, Trois-Rivières, Que.
    Trois-Rivières International Poetry Festival

  • 18 and 20 September 2015, Winnipeg, Man.
    Winnipeg International Writers Festival, Thin Air/ Livres en fête, Reading

  • 12 and 13 September 2015, Vaudreuil-Soulanges, Que.
    Visit of the Félix-Leclerc House and reading at the Vaudreuil-Soulanges Regional Museum with Marie-Belle Ouellet

  • 7 to 9 August 2015, Caraquet, N.B.
    Festival Acadien de Caraquet | Participation in the Festival de poésie

  • 31 July to 2 August 2015, Maria, Que.
    10th anniversary of Maria’s Parc du Vieux-Quai* in the Gaspé Peninsula | Conference and Reading with local poets

  • 2 to 5 July 2015, Baie-Comeau, Que.
    Haïku Litterary Camp of Baie-Comeau*

  • 30 et 31 May 2015, Montréal, Que.
    Festival de poésie de Montréal *

  • 23 May 2015, Mont-Joli, Que.
    The CLAC’s Evening Reading (Carrefour de la littérature, des arts et de la culture ) with Isabelle Blouin-Gagné at the Château Landry in Mont-Joli

  • 17 May 2015, Saint-Eustache, Que.
    Toulèsarts and Les Quinzaines de la poésie
    Reading with Martin Thibault, Poète de la cité (Montréal)

  • 4 May 2015, Trois-Rivières, Que.
    Les midis littéraires | Reading* with Pierre Chatillon

  • 25 to 27 April 2015, Vancouver, B.C.
    Great Canadian PoeTrain Tour | Readings at Café des Deux Soleils and Stanley Park

  • 22 to 24 April 2015, Edmonton, Alta.
    Edmonton Poetry Festival | Appearing in French Twist and The Gala: Poésie décoiffante / Bouffant Poetry

  • 8 April 2015, Québec City, Que.
    Salon international du livre de Québec | Book signing
  • 21 March 2015, Québec City, Que.
    La Nuit de la poésie by Printemps des Poètes, Studio P | Reading

  • 13 to 15 March 2015, La Malbaie and Les Éboulements, Que.
    Launch of the "Histoire et poésie" edition of the historical magazine Revue d'histoire de Charlevoix
    Readings* with Serge Gauthier and Bertrand Tremblay (poster)
    Coverage* and Interview* for Studio-Direct | Télévision de Charlevoix, TVC-VM
    Interview* during event by Le Charlevoisien

  • 26 February to 1 March 2015, Gatineau, Que.
    Salon du livre de l'Outaouais* | Interview and Book Signing

  • 20 February 2015, Québec City, Que.
    Writing workshop at Cardinal-Roy School

  • 30 January 2015, Trois-Rivières, Que.
    Writing workshop at the Musée québecois de culture populaire

  • 21 January 2015, Québec City, Que.
    Writing workshop at Notre-Dame du Canada School

  • 10 December 2014, Québec City, Que.
    Writing workshop at Cardinal-Roy School

  • 4 to 7 December 2014, Toronto, Ont.
    Toronto French Book Fair*| Invited poet at the Grande Soirée littéraire* and presence throughout the week-end for book signing

  • 1 December 2014, Rimouski, Que.
    "Des grands chefs et des écrivains" * | Contributing Writer
    Book proceeds to help support social rehabilitation in the Bas-Saint-Laurent region (Aux Trois Mâts) e

  • 26 October 2014, Québec, Que.
    Un dimanche en poésie* | Poetry reading at the Librairie du Quartier

  • 10 October 2014, Trois-Rivières, Que.
    Participation in the Éditions d’art Le Sabord’s Happy Hour Anniversary Event

  • 3 to 12 October 2014, Trois-Rivières, Que.
    Trois-Rivières International Poetry Festival Attendance at various events, readings, workshops and book signing throughout the festival (program)*

  • 8 to 10 August 2014, Shawinigan (Grand-Mère Sector) Que.
    Rendez-vous des peintres de Ste-Flore*| La poésie à la caserne La poésie s’invite au Rendez-vous des peintres* | Program*

  • 14-15 June 2014, Gatineau, Que.
    Writing Workshop* by the Outaouais Writers’ Association (Association des auteurs et auteures de l’Outaouais)

  • 7 June 2014, Montréal, Que.
    Festival de Poésie de Montréal* | Les Rendez-vous poétiques Round Table with Montreal’s Poète de la Cité Martin Thibault

  • 6 June 2014, Montréal, Que.
    Reading at Montreal’s Poetry Festival’s Soirée de poésie

  • 6 June 2014, Trois-Rivères, Que.
    Poetry writing workshop with youth at the Musée Québecois de la culture populaire in Trois-Rivières

  • 18 May 2014, Charlesbourg, Que.
    Speaker at the launch* of a poetry collective of Québec City area poets

  • 15 May 2014, Trois-Rivères, Que.
    Reading at the launch* of a poetry collective by the Éditions Le Sabord

  • 8 to 11 May 2014, Sudbury Ont.
    Salon du livre de Sudbury* | French book fair: writing workshops for youth as well as for adults, readings, round-table session and book signing

  • 26 April 2014, Shawinigan, Que.
    >Talk* at Bruno-Sigmen Library in Shawinigan-Sud

  • 11 avril 2014, Québec, Que.
    Guest Poet at Tam Tam Café’s Vendredi de poésie*

  • 10 April 2014, Québec, Que.
    Guest Poet at Festival Littéraire de Québec - Québec, la muse* Jazz and poetry evening hosted by Gaston Bellemare

  • 9 to 13 April 2014, Québec City, Que.
    Salon International du livre de Québec * | Book signing and participation at La poésie et sa géographie Round Table with Serge Patrice Thibodeau and Thierry Dimanche (photo)

  • 26 March 2014, Ottawa, Ont.
    Reception in honour of the installation of Michel Pleau as Canada’s 6th Parliamentary Poet Laureate Co-hosted by the Speaker of the Senate, The Honourable Noël A. Kinsella and the Speaker of the House of Commons, The Honourable Andrew Scheer Michel Pleau’s address* during the event, in its entirety

  • 25 to 30 March 2014, Ottawa, Ont.
    Guest Poet during Poetry in Ottawa - VerseFEST

  • 22 March 2014, Printemps des poètes, Québec, Que.
    Participation in the haïku exhibit
    De la terre jusqu'au ciel: marelles poétiques "en pieds de bas"* Poetry workshop at the Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec

  • 21 March 2014, Printemps des poètes, Québec, Qc.
    Public Speaking and Reading during 5 à 7 Festif and guest poet at Nuit de la poésie Event Announcement*

  • 20 March 2014, Printemps des poètes, Québec, Que.
    Tea time poetry recital Poésie à l’heure du thé Event Announcement and article from Journal de Sainte-Foy*

  • 16 March 2014, Québec, Que.
    Pignon Bleu Workshops : Journée de poésie, Gabrielle-Roy Public Library CBC | De jeunes apprentis poètes* Le Soleil |Journée de poésie*

  • 12 March 2014, Québec, Que.
    Meeting students from Cardinal Roy Secondary School

  • 26 February to 2 March, Gatineau, Que.
    Salon du Livre de l'Outaouais* Book signing and live interview with the CBC on Les Divines tentations*

  • Photos

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