A collection of poetry highlighting untold stories of African Canadians by poets across the country will make its Nova Scotia launch part of African Heritage Month events. The Great Black North: Contemporary African Canadian Poetry is the first national anthology to focus solely on poetry by African Canadians. “The Great Black North launch in Nova Scotia fits in well with this year’s African Heritage Month theme Then and Now: Our Journey Continues,” said African Nova Scotian Affairs Minister Percy Paris. “The poems in the collection are snapshots of the African Nova Scotian and Canadian experience and reflect our struggle, history and triumphs over centuries. “I commend the poets and editors for creating this valuable resource for Canadians today and for future generations.” The anthology features more than 90 pieces by national and local poets, including El Jones, George Augustus Borden, Yvette Doucette, IzREal Jones, Sylvia Hamilton, Shauntay Grant, David Woods, Afua Cooper and Toronto’s Poet Laureate George Elliott Clarke. It was co-edited by established writers and poets Valerie Mason-John and Kevan Anthony Cameron. “As a new African Canadian, I came here from the United Kingdom thinking I had nothing in common with the black people of Canada,” said Dr. Mason-John. “Editing this anthology has taught me that part of my ancestry is steeped into the streets and oceans of Nova Scotia. I am proud to be an African Canadian.” The Great Black North launch will be Wednesday, Feb. 13, at 6:30 p.m. at the Black Cultural Centre, 10 Cherry Brook Rd., Cherry Brook. It will include book signings, poetry performances, and a question and answer session with Dr. Mason-John and local poets.