Public Poetry Festival Debuts

In honour of poetry month, our school will be staging a poetry festival featuring five local poets and Claire Battershill ’04, who recently won the CBC Literary Prize for fiction. Battershill will read along with poets Patrick Friesen, Eve Joseph, Catherine Greenwood, Steve Noyes and UVic professor Steven Price ’94.

“I wanted people who are not necessarily well-known in the public eye, but who are accomplished poets,” says organizer Terence Young.

The literary event will also feature several student poets, including Petra Kenney Prize winner Vickie Yang. This is the third year in a row that a SMUS student has taken home the international poetry award. The festival will also be a launch party for the 10th edition of our own literary journal, Between the Red Walls.

“Every year, we have exceptional writers,” says Mr. Young, whose work has been nominated for the Governor General’s Award for poetry. “Most of the students who will be reading have been published in the Claremont Review, a national literary magazine for young adult writers.”

Also performing will be a few student musicians, who will stage an acoustic concert and Vancouver group The Fugitives, who blend music with performance poetry.

“The Fugitives are well-loved,” says Mr. Young. “Their poetry is something that people understand immediately.”

Mr. Young hopes to make the festival an annual event. The afternoon of readings kicks off at 2:30 pm on Saturday, April 18th with an intermission at 5:00 pm. The Fugitives and Between the Red Walls poets will take to the Copeland Lecture Theatre stage at 7:00 pm.

“We really want to include the larger community in what’s happening at our school,” says Mr. Young.


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