Today I collected 2700 winter cards from the printers. Over the next ten days I’ll be addressing envelopes, and packing up cards before posting them to rest homes and medical centres all over the lower South Island. I decided to give the newsletter a miss this season and use the blog as a vehicle for providing background info on our winter poets.
PitWR appreciates the generosity of all the poets for supporting this project.
So who are they?
Waiata Dawn Davies taught school until 1990. Her latest collection (4th) of poetry is entitled Over & Out From Down Under. She lives and writes in a fishing crib at the mouth of Waitaki River for 8 months per year, travels and writes in the Northern Hemisphere for the rest of year. Waiata has 8 sons and 20 grandchildren.
Maynie Thompson lives on Waiheke Island, has published two books of children’s verse: I heard a Blackbird singing and Running in the Wind. Most of the verses were written from children’s own ideas and experiences while she was a member of the NZ Playcentre Association.
Jenny Bornholdt is a poet and anthologist. Jenny spent six months of 2003 in Menton, France as the 2002 Meridian Energy Katherine Mansfield Fellow. She was named as New Zealand’s Poet Laureate in March 2005. Her latest book is The Rocky Shore (VUP October 2008) which won the Montana New Zealand Book Award for Poetry in 2009.
William Baer, an American writer, editor, translator, and professor, received the 1997 T. S. Eliot Prize for his book The Unfortunates. The author/editor of fifteen books, he holds the Melvin M. Peterson Chair in English and American Literature at the University of Evansville in southern Indiana where he currently teaches creative writing, cinema, and world cultures.
Martha Morseth has lived in Dunedin since 1972, teaching high school English until 2000. Her poems have appeared in literary journals, anthologies, popular magazines and in her collection, Staying Inside the Lines.
Victoria Stace wrote poetry in secret from a young age. She trained as a lawyer but took time out to have her family, and during this time rekindled her interest in writing and poetry, studying at Institute of Modern Letters at Victoria University. She has had poetry published in a variety of New Zealand publications. She currently practises as a lawyer in Wellington.
Richard von Sturmer is a writer and lives in Auckland. With his wife, Amala Wrightson, he runs the Auckland Zen Centre, a Buddhist community.
Ruth Dallas was Burns Fellow at Otago University in 1968. She received an honorary doctorate from Otago University in 1978, and a CBE (Companion of the Order of the British Empire) in 1989. Her last book, The Joy of a Ming Vase, contains a handful of haiku.
John Edward Masefield was an English poet and writer, and Poet Laureate of the United Kingdom from 1930 until his death in 1967.
Many thanks to the Southern Trust for sponsoring the printing of this winter card.