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From the Noticeboard

Stretching the season

The Canadian Safe Boating Council would like boaters to enjoy all that fall boating has to offer but [ ... ]

Dancing Queen for Hospice PEI

Join Playing with Choir at Memorial Hall on September 21 from 6–9:30 pm for a fundraiser for Hospi [ ... ]

John William Smith—August 10, 1927–March 16, 2018

John William Smith (photo: John Sylvester)John William Smith was born in Toronto in 1927 to middle-aged parents, both of whom had immigrated to Canada from England around 1910. He was an only child; his childhood was solitary, but happy. He made meticulous model airplanes and boats that he carved out of balsa wood. John was highly intelligent and won all the awards in all the grades all through school. He was skilled in mathematics and physics and, it seemed to us, he knew everything about the universe, but he chose to teach English all his working life. He was a poet, a classical music aficionado, and a collector of books. John was athletic his whole life —a runner, a swimmer, a bike rider, a woods walker, and a feeder of squirrels. He was a man who felt peace among trees, with wind on his skin.

John Smith taught English at Prince of Wales College and then at the University of Prince Edward Island, where he was Dean of Arts for a number of years, and he retired with the honour of UPEI Professor Emeritus. He was loved as a teacher and respected as a colleague. In 2000, John became Prince Edward Island’s first poet laureate. Once, at a poetry talk, John was asked for whom he writes—who was his audience? “I write,” said John, “for a benevolent audience in the Mother Ship.”

John was a man of great spirit and was the most non-judgmental person we have ever met. No matter how frail his body these last few years, he talked of profound matters, such as the dialogue between the particular and the general—between the ego or small self and the atman. He said recently his thoughts and language have changed for expressing these ideas about reality.

John Smith died peacefully on Friday evening, March 16, 2018. He was the most lucid and learned human most of us have ever known or are likely ever to know again. He was a kind and gentle man. Owls and orioles gathered around him these last weeks. 

—Julia Schurman, daughter, and Deirdre Kessler, friend

Events Calendar

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Some Upcoming Events

Forage PEI

First annual food industry symposium in Charlottetown October 18 & 19
Various locations A new a [ ... ]

Down With Demon Rum

September 16, 23 & 30
The Haviland Club Down With Demon Rum: Stories and Songs of Rum Running on [ ... ]

North Shore Community Centre event serie...

September 25
North Shore Community Centre The Rural Municipality of North Shore will present the Lat [ ... ]

Recent News & Articles

Drawing the line

Profile: Sandy Carruthers by Jane Ledwell Retired for a year now after twenty-five years teaching  [ ... ]

Free transportation at Cloggeroo

The provincial government will sponsor free transportation at this year’s Cloggeroo festival to he [ ... ]

Charlottetown’s Historic Squares exhibit...

The City of Charlottetown Planning and Heritage Department has created an exhibit exploring the hist [ ... ]