life rattle show no. 1219

Presented on Sunday, August 26, 2012


Hosted by laurie kallis


"The Fight"
by Emily Smith
"The Day Dad Died"
by Elizabeth Clark

tonight's Show

Tonight, on Life Rattle No. 1219, we present two stories: one from new Life Rattle writer Emily Smith and a Life Rattle classic from Elizabeth Clark, recorded in June of 1999,.

Our featured stories both reveal life in a family that is out of control. A situation far too common, and one that is usually kept secret, hidden behind a curtain of shame and fear. With courageous, brutally honest prose, Emily Smith and Elizabeth Clark bring us behind that curtain.

Emily Smith was born in Toronto in 1989 and raised near Hamilton, Ontario. Very shy as a child, Smith found inspiration in playing the piano and reading novels. In her midteens, Smith learned to engage with the world rather than just observe it and started travelling. She eventually returned to Burlington and pursued studies in English and writing.

Though her father plays the primary antagonist in "The Fight," Smith also reveals how her father’s actions influence other family members and the destructive roles they take on.

Elizabeth Clark was born in 1961, the second of six children in Campbellford, Ontario a small farming community two hours north east of Toronto. Clark left home in 1981 to attend Sir Sandford Fleming College in Peterborough. She switched programs three times before graduating with diplomas in General Arts and Science and Correctional Work in 1985. While attending college she met and moved in with her partner Peter.
After graduation, Clark worked in group homes for a few years then returned to Fleming to study nursing. She graduated in 1991, then moved to Toronto where she worked as a nurse in hospitals and private health care until 2002 when she and Peter purchased her family home and returned to Campbellford.
Clark works as a full-time registered nurse at Peterborough Regional Health Centre. She spends her free time gardening, renovating her old family home, and studying alternative healing. She currently writes poetry and free verse at

Clark’s stories, depicting a very disturbing, rural childhood, will be featured in the upcoming Life Rattle collection “Rub Salt.” Watch for that book launch this fall.

In "The Day Dad Died," Clark writes from an adult’s viewpoint and gives us painful insight into the aftermath of that childhood.

Note: Both of tonight's stories contain intense, disturbing content and language. Listener discretion is advised.