Trillium Book Awards Author Reading 2015

Everything changes. Nothing changes. (part four)

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Continued from Everything changes. Nothing changes. (part three).

Final blog....

So what is the point?

Well, not long ago a man...an icon, a legend, a very special figure in the world of Canadian writing, died. His name: Robert Weaver. Of course, I looked to see what would be written about him, what would be said, how he would be valued at the moment of passing. As I recall, the Globe, with its serious but I thought modest piece, was a day late.

The Star, on time, did well by Weaver, good space, good quotes. But the Post caught me totally by surprise. An elegant double-page spread ... a lovely large photograph… nothing modest about the gesture at all... and a knowing piece of prose to go with it… exactly the kind of thing the old Telegram used to do. Panache appropriate to the moment.

A few weeks later, I was at a small ceremony at Massey College to honour Robert Weaver. I was to be one of the speakers, one of the persons to tell stories about him... and by gum, by golly, a good section of the local literati were there... the established movers and shakers. He had been their man, their kind of special man, and as I made small talk here, and small talk there, I kept saying, "Didn't you think the way the Post treated him was terrific...?" and "Did you see the real style with which the Post paid homage to him?" and so on, and each time I got a blank stare, and a muffled "No," and a slightly strange look to go with it, and finally I understood when one of the publishing lights in town, a woman of influence, eyed me and said, "I do not read the Post, on principle."

My God.

Everything changes. Nothing changes.

The views expressed in the Writer-in-Residence blogs are those held by the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of Open Book: Toronto.

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Barry Callaghan

Barry Callaghan is an award-winning author, poet, editor and publisher. He is one of Canada’s most preeminent men of letters. His most recent collection of short stories, Between Trains, was published by McArthur & Company in 2007.

Go to Barry Callaghan’s Author Page