William Hawkins

William Hawkins was born in Ottawa in 1940. After side trips to the West Coast and Mexico, he resided in the capital, pursuing enlightenment or a reasonable alternative thereto. Hawkins worked as a truck driver, cook, journalist and musician before settling on the taxi profession as a means of preserving integrity and ensuring near-poverty. His work appeared in the seminal anthology New Wave Canada: The New Explosion in Canadian Poetry (Toronto: Contact Press, 1966) edited by Raymond Souster and Modern Canadian Verse (Toronto: Oxford, 1967) edited by A.J.M. Smith. His books include Ottawa Poems (Kitchener: Weed/Flower Press, 1966) and The Madman’s War (Ottawa: S.A.W. Publications, 1974). Broken Jaw Press published his Dancing Alone: Selected Poems in 2005. Also an acclaimed songwriter, a tribute CD (Dancing Alone: The Songs of William Hawkins) was released in 2008. In 2013, he was inducted into the VerseOttawa Hall of Honour. Hawkins passed away in 2016 and is resting on Poet’s Hill in Beechwood Cemetery (Ottawa).