New poetry book by Dr. Brent MacLaine to be launched on April 24

Dr. Brent MacLaine standing in field. Photo by John Sylvester
Dr. Brent MacLaine, author of "A Skeptic in Springtime," a new book of poetry. Photo by John Sylvester

Dr. Brent MacLaine will launch a new poetry book called A Skeptic in Springtime on April 24, 2024, at 7 pm, in the Faculty Lounge (Room 201), SDU Main Building, University of Prince Edward Island.

A Skeptic in Springtime wrestles with uncertainty and aging, hurricanes, gravity, and particle theory. Amid all the unknowns, “Still, the white-throated sparrow cries I’m here, here, here, here.” Rooted in the PEI landscape where MacLaine grew up, his gaze ranges farther afield to Assyrian myth in “Killing a Lassamu,” to the Song Dynasty in “Su Dongpo Makes Ink,” to art in “Claude Monet in the Waiting Room.”

The book closes with a tribute to the late Dr. John Smith, former poet laureate of PEI and professor of English at UPEI. Combining keen observation of the natural world and the human condition, the poems in this collection contain “a universe which has leapt from nothing into something.”

MacLaine is a professor emeritus of the UPEI Department of English and the author of six volumes of poetry. He grew up in the rural community of Rice Point, PEI, to which he returned after teaching at universities in Vancouver, Edmonton, China, and Singapore. His awards for poetry include a League of Canadian Poets prize, the Prince Edward Island Book Award, and the Atlantic Poetry Prize.

The event is free, and all are welcome to attend. Books will be available for purchase. The event is sponsored by Island Studies Press, the UPEI Department of English, and The Bookmark. For more information, contact Bren Simmers at 902-566-0386 or

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