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My Idol, My Inspiration, My Muse, Author and Poet, Dorothy Farmiloe

May 23, 2013

Dorothy Farmiloe is now 94 years old.  She is a retired English Professor but has had a life long writing career.  Some of her titles are “Words For My Weeping Daughter,” “Blue Is The Colour Of Death,” “Isabella Valancy Crawford: The Life and the Legends,” “Mother’s and Daughter’s,”  “Elk Lake: Legend and Lore,” and “The Legend of Jack Munroe: A Portrait of a Canadian Hero,” and many other collections of poetry, textbooks, and novels.  She is the strongest,

Dorothy Alicia Farmiloe, poet, author, editor and retired University professor.

Dorothy Alicia Farmiloe, poet, author, editor and retired University professor.

Mainline, a magazine edited by Dorothy Farmiloe in the late 1960's and early 1970'sMainline, a magazine edited by Dorothy Farmiloe in the late 1960’s and early 1970’s

determined, intelligent, honest, down to Earth, artistic and all around amazing woman that I have ever had the pleasure of knowing.  She is a poet but has written several novels, some biographies and she wrote text books from her class notes she used during her years as an English Professor.  She writes for 30 minutes every morning with her coffee, she loves her crossword puzzles, painting and her most prized accomplishment (if you ask her) is her flower gardens and every year she plants her vegetable garden in raised beds lined with railroad ties.  Between the rows are small paths of pebbles.  She lives in a modest A-framed cottage in Northern Ontario with a beautiful view upstairs and down of the lake, poplar trees, her flower beds and a flat stone walkway down the small gully, over a little red bridge with a babbling brook underneath and to a small beach with a sand, stone and grass dock for canoes. It is a magical place.

How do I know her and how do I know about her magical cottage set back in the enchanted poplar tree woods from the lake?  I spent my childhood summers there, my Easters and my Christmas breaks because she is my grandmother.  Dorothy Farmiloe is my grandmother.  She has always been my inspiration and my idol.  I check with her almost every week now and in fact I just called her to ask if I could post this.  She giggled and said, “Oh yes dear that’s fine but Amy tell me more about this book and how it is being published.”  She sounds a bit annoyed that I would not get an agent and a publisher and cruise down the old fashioned way of publishing.  I tried to explain it as thoroughly as I could to someone who absolutely refuses to set up an email, does not use the internet and would have to go to the local library to use their computer to get online.  She is a fascinating woman and I love her so much.  Maybe I will write her biography one day.

For more information on her collections of poetry, novels and other books:

  1. Anonymous permalink

    Dear Amy – I am so touched to read your 2013 tribute to your grandmother, Dorothy Farmiloe. She and I have been friends for 30 years and have corresponded regularly until she went into Englehart Hospital. I had one letter from her when she was admitted but have not heard since. At the time, she wasn’t sure if she was going to be transferred to a nursing home, but it seemed to be looming on the horizon. As her 94th birthday nears, I want to ensure that she receives her card. Wonder if you would do me the great kindness of updating me with your grandma’s whereabouts? Please send me an e-mail:
    John Richthammer

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear John, I forwarded your email to my grandma, she’s not real good with computers but she has friends that come and help her with her email and things. She’s still at Englehart Hospital, I was just up to see her. We are waiting for a Nursing Facility to open in Niagara Falls, Ont. to be closer to us. It will be sad, Elk Lake is my second home but I still have a bear camp my dad left to us in Kirkland Lake! But it will be wonderful to have her within walking distance from my home! I literally can walk to the bridge from my home in Niagara Falls, NY. I will forward her email to you as well. Thank you for the kind words John. She’s my idol and quite a lady!


  2. jennifer king permalink

    Hi Amy, I was very happy to come across your blog. I lived beside your grandmother in Elk Lake in the 70’s. I always admired her and her writing. She was kind enough to let me interview her later on when I had moved away and was at graduate school.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I went to University with your grandmother and she and I wrote quote a bit for the University magazine at the time. We also took Creative Writing courses together. I always admired her, especially going back to school later in life, and we had many, many wonderful talks about poetry. i still have some of her early stuff. Then I moved away, and lost contact completely. I am so sorry to hear of her death.

    Fr. Ron

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, this was so nice to read this morning. My grandmother’s death had a deep impact on me, I miss her terribly. I know she guides me as she always has, she was an amazing woman in all she accomplished. ~Love & Light~ Amy


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