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We live in strange and difficult times, but poetry can be a comfort. The second reading of the 2019 Pegasus Books Poetry Series is on Friday 22nd March, 6.30pm at Pegasus Books, Cuba Mall, Wellington. I will be reading along with wonderful poets Harvey Molloy, Claire Orchard, and Magnolia Wilson. Hope to see you there.

Can’t wait for National Poetry Day? I’ll be reading at this event along with Kerry Hines, Adrienne Jansen, Vivienne Ball, Keith Johnson, Trish Harris, Peter Farrell, Marg Ranger, Reinhold Kittelberger and anyone who wants to read at the open mic!3B3E8359-FC64-4A5D-B494-1446181AB4D6

Lots going on for the 20th anniversary of National Poetry Day! Full list of events here: POETRYDAY.CO.NZ

National Poetry Day logo

I will be reading at two events:

Where the Wild Words Are |
Come and hear Mākaro Press poets bewitch, berate, busk and bewilder at the Wellington Central Library.

Mary Cresswell • Lindsay Pope • Janis Freegard • Tim Jones • Harvey Molloy • Maggie Rainey-Smith • Keith Westwater • Pete Carter • Peter Stuart • Robyn Cooper • Helen Rickerby • Julie Hanify • Peter Rawnsley • Robin Peace • John Howell
Entry details: Free
Date/times: Friday, 25 August, 1-3pm
Location: Wellington Central Library, Victoria Street, Wellington.
Further info:

Poetry Ngaio
An evening of poems by some of the terrific NZ writers with connections to Ngaio and Crofton Downs. Readers include Kerry Popplewell, Kate Spencer, John Howell, Janis Freegard, Carmen Downes and more. Includes open mic. Light refreshments provided. (You’ll also be able to see/add to a display of poems responding to local photographs, which runs at Cummings Park Library 14-28 August.)
Entry details: Admission free, all welcome
Date/times: Friday 25 August, 7.30-9.30pm
Location: Cummings Park Library, Ottawa Road, Ngaio, Wellington
Contact: Kerry Hines poetryngaio@hotmail.comFurther info:

I’ll also be calling into the Upper Hutt Library for this:

Competition Awards Night
Upper Hutt Library’s annual poetry competition returns this year on the 20th year celebration of National Poetry Day (to enter, see competition calendar). Join us on National Poetry Day to celebrate our competition winners and all things poetry!
Entry Details: Free, all welcome.
Date/Times: 25th August, 6.30-8.30pm
Location: Upper Hutt Central Library
Contact: Danny at
Further Info:

Happy Birthday National Poetry Day!

Something to go to on National Poetry Day – hurrah!Poetry Ngaio

Waiting for the bus tour…

So, this is where I’ll be on the shortest day of the year:


Reposting this in memory of the Easter Rising, 100 years ago.

Janis Freegard's Weblog

This is a poem of mine that was originally published in the wonderful Blackmail Press.  I wrote it after a visit to Kilmainham Gaol in Dublin.  Joseph Plunkett, one of the Irish rebels who took part in the 1916 rebellion (or “Easter Rising”), was executed hours after marrying his sweetheart, Grace Gifford.

Joseph Mary Plunkett

Easter Rising (Joseph Plunkett, 1916), by Janis Freegard

they blindfolded him
our guide explains
for the benefit of the soldiers
(six standing, six kneeling)
so they wouldn’t see his eyes
when they shot him –
a piece of white paper
marking his heart
the day before, he’d married
in Kilmainham Gaol –
the proposal’s on display
You will marry me and no-one else
he’d written to his Grace
I’ve been a blind fool

Cross marking the place of execution of the le...

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Janis on Twitter

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Tuesday Poem

Tuesday Poem


October 2020

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