Journey with No Maps is the first biography of P.K. Page, a brilliant twentieth-century poet and a fine artist. The product of over a decade's research and writing, the book follows Page as she becomes one of Canada's best-loved and most influential writers. "A borderline being," as she called herself, she recognized the new choices offered to women by modern life but followed only those related to her quest for self-discovery. Tracing Page's life through two wars, world travels, the rise of modernist and Canadian cultures, and later Sufi study, biographer Sandra Djwa details the people and events that inspired her work. Page's independent spirit propelled her from Canada to England, from work as a radio actress to a scriptwriter for the National Film Board, from an affair with poet F.R. Scott to an enduring marriage with diplomat Arthur Irwin. Page wrote her story in poems, fiction, diaries, librettos, and her visual art. Journey with No Maps reads like a novel, drawing on the poet's voice from interviews, diaries, letters, and writings as well as the voices of her contemporaries. With the vividness of a work of fiction and the thoroughness of scholarly dedication, Djwa illustrates the complexities of Page's private experience while also documenting her public emergence as an internationally known poet. It is both the captivating story of a remarkable woman and a major contribution to the study of Canada's literary and artistic history.
Sandra Djwa is professor emeritus of English at Simon Fraser University, and the prize-winning author of The Politics of the Imagination: A Life of F.R. Scott and Professing English: A Life of Roy Daniells.
“Djwa’s careful prose and chronological rigour are matched by her analysis (…) Page unquestionably deserves a full critical biography such as this.” George Fetherling
"Sandra Djwa's brilliant, compellingly detailed biography of P.K. Page is a fitting tribute to one of our greatest poets. Djwa captures Page as a complex, original, and dazzling artist of international stature, and in the process, offers an illuminating portrait of Canadian cultural life in the latter half of the twentieth century." Rosemary Sullivan, author of Villa Air-Bel: World War II, Escape, and a House in Marseille
"Sandra Djwa has written a foundational biography of P.K. Page as artist and poet on which all further work on Page must draw. She conveys the extraordinary range of Page's generous engagement with the world, and finds her way to the core of P.K.'s passio