Born in New Brunswick on April 8, 1938, Margo Button is a former high school teacher who has taught French and Spanish in Hong Kong, Chile, Lebanon and Canada. She arrived in B.C. in 1985. Her poetic memoir of losing her son Randall to schizophrenia includes three losses--first to the inner landscape of his mental illness, secondly to the streets, and finally to suicide. "I would have followed you to hell," she writes, in The Unhinging of Wings (Oolichan, 1996). It received the Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize and was later adapted to the stage.

In a sequel, The Shadows Fall Behind (Oolichan, 2000), Button contemplates the rage she feels about her son's fate and gains some sense of equilibrium by adopting a South American child. This work was followed by The Elders' Palace (in English and Inuinnaqtun) and Heron Cliff (Signature 2007). Heron Cliff, includes Blue Dahlias which co-won The Malahat Review's Long Poem Prize and was awarded Gold in the poetry category of the 2006 National Magazine Awards. Button has an Honours B.A. from University of Toronto and an M.A. in French literature from UBC. She taught high school in Ottawa for six years and an international schools in Hong Kong, Lebanon and Chile. She has lived in Nanoose Bay, B.C. and Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.


The Unhinging of Wings (Oolichan, 1996)
The Shadows Fall Behind (Oolichan, 2000)
The Elders' Palace
Heron Cliff (Signature 2007)

[BCBW 2007] "Poetry"