George Elliott Clarke was born in the Black Loyalist community of Windsor Plains, Nova Scotia, and raised in Halifax. His poetry is written in a lyrical style, frequently alluding to religious, Black Loyalist heritage. In 1991, he won the Archibald Lampman Award for poetry and in 1998, he was the first recipient of the prestigious Portia White Prize. Clarke's work has been published in many periodicals and anthologies. He is the author of the novel George and Rue, which was longlisted for the IMPAC literary award. His numerous books of poetry include Execution Poems (2001), which won a Governor General's Award. In 1999 his opera Beatrice Chancy premiered in Halifax, and was later produced in Toronto and Edmonton. It was broadcast on CBC television in 2000 and garnered a Gemini nomination.