New Brunswick Author Portal

Clarence-Edgar  Comeau
Categories: Male AuthorsFrancophone AuthorsPoetsDramatistsAcadian Coast


Born in Neguac, New Brunswick, Clarence-Edgar Comeau attended Neguac high school and studied philosophy at the Université de Moncton. He studied design and interior design techniques in Montréal, where he has lived since 1979.

A poet and playwright, he also became known in New Brunswick and Quebec for adult plays performed in the 70s and 90s. He has written several plays as well as stories for children, including Les rêves de petit rien, published in 2008.

Clarence-Edgar Comeau self-published 10 collections of poems, entitled Âmes de destruction massive; Onirique comme avec les ombres; Images sans repos; Labyrinthe d'une sortie de secours; Quelque part en nous… ton visage; La Presse, le 18 septembre 1993; Soubresauts; Murmures pleins de gestes; Le rêve, l'espoir, les ombres and Caresse obscure.

He also self-published two children’s plays: Le nombril du pays des côtes and Clown et Soleil qui tousse.

What is your favourite New Brunswick book, and why?

Les cloisons en vertige by Ronald Després, Édition Beauchemin, 1959, is still my favourite New Brunswick book. But I could say that his complete works remain my favourite. Després is a literary reference when it comes to content, form and style, but also, and especially, attention to detail.

Ronald Després’ poetic work is far from prolific compared with that of many other Acadian poets. However, with respect to both the aesthetics and the quality of his theme, it is nearly unequalled. He is among those rare poets capable of writing engaged poetry while maintaining the highest standards of aesthetics, style and form.

The ease with which he moves us reminds me of Léo Ferré, who could make love and hate, gentleness and violence, disgust and charm, rebellion and hope all co-exist through his vision of our human condition trapped in its universe of injustice and helplessness.

We see a poet’s greatness in the way he captures the reader’s imagination. Personally, I find him a model for anyone who does not want to take the easy way out. By often reading the work of poets of Després’ calibre, I have been motivated to strive for a poetic style that is all my own.

What do you consider to be the highlight of your career so far?

Of course, obtaining a literary award or membership in a literary association such as ADELF is exciting and a great pleasure, and these could be considered a highlight in a literary career. However, if I were to identify one highlight in my literary world, I would say it was during the 1980s and 90s, at a time when I was developing my own poetic writing approach, which means that now, in reading my texts, you can be sure they do not resemble anything being done elsewhere. I say this in all modesty, because I wanted to take this personal journey, by isolating myself from the whole literary milieu.

The reviews I received for my first collection of poetry defined me as the first real love poet in Acadie. I was also compared to surrealists like Breton, Éluard, Aragon, Lorca, Neruda, Paz, Césaire, etc. I therefore read poets from that period, but also the works of two Acadian poets, Ronald Després and Léonard Forest. After that, it was a long road to find my own style. It lasted over 20 years.

This learning period, which often had me looking in the mirror, helped me to reach the target, my objective. Today, I can say that achieving this goal is the highlight of my career.

Literary Prizes

Nomination -  Prix France-Québec (nominated by ADELF : Association des écrivains de langue française) - 1981
Prix France-Acadie - 1981 In recognition of: Entre amours et silences

Featured Publication

Les rêves de petit rien

Find this author in the New Brunswick public libraries catalogue.

Source(s): Author