Thursday, October 11, 2007

WordFest Encore, Encore

Two readings yesterday: Chasing the Muse, hosted by Christian Bok up at U of C, included Niels Hav, Laksmi Pamuntjak, Stuart Ross and Priscila Uppal followed by a good discussion about writing practice, muse or lack of muse. I hadn't heard Pamuntjak before and was quite taken by the rhythms of her reading.

Wednesday Night Showcase featured Peter Robinson, Roberta Rees, Marie-Claire Blais, A. L. Kennedy and James George. Ran into Gail Anderson-Dargatz on the way in and sat with her for the first bit before she had to leave to tuck her children in for the night. I don't want to say how long it's been since I sat across from her in a writing workshop at UVIC, but let's just say we didn't recognize each other without the name tags. The reading itself was diverse--Robinson is a crime writer and I thought for a moment that we had slipped into an episode of Prime Suspect, only the gaze was not (DCI) Jane Tennison, but DCI Banks... James George read a monologue, Roberta Rees pulled off a difficult child's pov, A.L. Kennedy is very dry, and very funny. For me the highlight was hearing Marie-Claire Blais read from Augustino and the Choir of Destruction. What a wonder. What an absolute wonder. She's reading today in French which will be even better--not that I'll be able to make that. She read last night in English, which was difficult, and more difficult given that the whole reading was one long continuous sentence...

Much buzz about Ameen Merchant's performance last night, and his novel, The Silent Raga. He'll read again on Friday night with Kiran Desai and others prior to the Poetry Bash, which includes yours truly.

Today I'm missing Gil Adamson, a fabulous poet with her first novel, Andrew Wedderburn, and Jacqueline Baker, who I met last night and look forward to hearing in Banff...much going on but I have appointments all afternoon.

Oh, and yes, Meg Tilly blogs.

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