“Jillian Christmas is a queer, afro-caribbean writer living on the unceded territories of the Squamish, Tsleil-Waututh and Musqueam people (Vancouver, BC.), where she served for six years as Artistic Director of Versəs Festival of Words. She has won numerous Grand Poetry-Slam Championship titles and represented both Toronto and Vancouver at 11 national poetry events, notably breaking ground as the first Canadian to perform on the final stage of the Women of the World Poetry Slam.
In 2016 Jillian was named one of two Poets of Honour by the Canadian Festival of Spoken Word. Jillian’s work has been featured in numerous online publications including Lemon Hound, The Rusty Toque and the Huffington Post, and published in a number of collections, most recently including Power Poems for Small Humans (Flamingo Rampant Press – (YA) 2019), Matrix New Queer Writing (issue 98), The Post Feminist Post, Plenitude Magazine, Room Magazine (39.1) and celebrated anthology, The Great Black North.
An enthusiastic organizer, Jillian has participated in, developed, and executed programs in partnership with Toronto Poetry Project, Wordplay – Poetry in Schools, the Vancouver Writers Festival, The Talking Stick Festival, Urban Native Youth Association, Museum of Vancouver, Museum of Anthropology, Simon Fraser University, Kwantlen Polytechnic University, and the University of British Columbia. She has presented poetry and theory in a multitude of venues including the BC Civil Liberties gala, the SFU 2018 grad conference closing keynote, and numerous panels focussed on the intersections of critical race theory and contemporary art.
Jillian continues to tour the continent experimenting with music/poetry fusion, banging on her drum kit, clowning, and sharing stages and stories.