Robin Hyde, Whanganui

Peter Clayworth, Ann-Marie Houng Lee & Redmer Yska with Robin Hyde

It was great day in Whanganui on Saturday (17th August, the day after National Poetry Day).  The Sarjeant (which supported the event) was closed for earthquake checks but Element cafe kindly stepped in – very cool venue in an old bank building.  Dr Mary Paul and Redmer Yska gave us some fascinating insights into Robin Hyde/Iris Wilkinson’s life and writing (including Redmer’s reading of her poem ‘The White Chair’), I read a few of her poems and a few of my own, and the legendary Glen Colquhoun rounded out the afternoon with a lively performance of poems dedicated to Iris.  Despite all the shakiness of the day before, there was an impressive turnout of around 80 lovely people, some of whom had travelled from Palmerston North and Wellington to be there.

The event was the brain-child of Whanganui-based writer Ann-Marie Houng Lee who did a fantastic job of organising the event. She told me it was sparked by the Tuesday poem I posted (If you have linen women) a couple of months back.  Worth checking out if you haven’t read it before.

2005-01-08 12.39.17    Me with Robin Hyde outside the old Chronicle building