Saturday, April 30, 2011

Leg it over there

Is this the funniest photo of a pair of legs you've ever seen?

There is some excellent work in the latest edition of Otoliths, including a very moving poem from Michele Leggott - highly recommend read.

In other news:

went to a very interesting reading on Saturday evening, given by members of The Author's Mouth group here in Auckland. There'll be another on the last Friday of May, at Borders in Albany's Westfield Mall. In future I will not down two coffees immediately prior to meeting people or wear skinny jeans to drink said coffee and sit for a long period of time.

completed a first draft of my screenplay, finally, and it's awful. Putting it aside for some considerable period of time until I have fathomed what to do with it.

writing and drafting poetry daily and coming up with some interesting things and I got the idea for my next collection of short stories - all of them, all in one go - like being hit by a creativity mannequin and swapping outfits rapidly. Now I need to stay focused and finish what I've started.

discovered many things make me laugh, often at inappropriate moments.

What are you lot up to and what do you know?

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Mashing nations

Tea's up. Fancy a sup? Let's see who's made tea and who's got pot luck.

Tiny teapot or big draw?

And the winner is.....

A little dreg soaked, the winner.....

Drop me your address in an email, Steven, and Shamfeign will wind its way to you.

Thanks to all of you who took part.

Monday, April 18, 2011

We ourselves

Excuse my wonky photography - the typeset on the actual book is not skewed as it appears here!

Saturday night had me at Browns Bay Library for the launch of Eye Street Poet Alice Hooton's debut poetry collection Shamfeign

Having a bludgeon of a bout of anaemia and the kids home all weekend meant I only had time to read a few of the poems myself, so more about them later, but so far I would describe hearing Alice read several and dipping in myself like having my brain taken back in time and stuck in the head of someone reminiscing over an old photo album, flicking the pages familiarly and quickly before me, pausing here and there on particularly fond recollections. Mostly I was struck by their brevity: succinct but with emotion and gravity, and a wry, quiet wit. The excerpt on the jacket, from Strangers, could also describe the poems themselves:

today I paint a picture
of islands

a clipped blue sea
jostling windsurfers in the bay

a ragbag of hometalk
lest they forget

(Copyright Alice Hooton 2011)

Originally from Ireland, Alice's poetry takes in immigrant tales of Ellis Island, WWII, and relatives at home and NZ. I have a signed copy for the first name out of a teapot ( I lost my hat - which isn't to say I recommend wearing a teapot for sun protection - a burn is a burn is a burn...). Drop a smiley :) in the comments if you want your name to mash (also known in non S. Yorks circles as brew).

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Any verse ay?

April 10th would have been the birthday of poet Bella Akhmadulina, had she not passed away last year. As a fine tribute to her, Russell Streur has put together a special edition The Eye of the Needle where women writers, poets and artists have come together to mark her first posthumous birthday. I have several pieces of poetry and artwork there and am very pleased to have been asked to contribute. Many thanks to Russell for the opportunity.