After a glorious autumn, winter has arrived with a rush. Never mind, we were all ready and prepared. The winter-red poetry cards were posted off this afternoon so they should be landing in medical waiting rooms, hospices, rest homes and prisons over the next few days.
Thank you to all the poets in our winter card and all the poets over the previous 26 editions who have so willingly allowed me to ‘borrow’ their poems. I frequently hear from readers that after reading the card they’ve googled a poet or gone to the library or their local bookshop in search of more poems by their favourite poet.
And now, over to our winter poets………
Kath Beattie says – Writing has been away of life from the beginning. We had no money for books, so we wrote our own. Since then I’ve had several adult and children’s short stories, children’s chapter books, two books in the Scholastic ‘My Story’ series, early childhood readers, articles, travel pieces and poems published and/or broadcast. I’ve also self-published a book on Loss and Grief.
David Eggleton is a performance poet and writer. Part Polynesian, he grew up between Fiji and New Zealand. Eggleton’s many awards include six times Book Reviewer of the Year in the Montana New Zealand Book Awards, PEN Best First Book of Poetry, the Robert Burns Fellowship and, uniquely among New Zealand poets, he was London Time Out’s Street Entertainer of the Year in 1985. He also writes non-fiction, has produced several documentaries, CDs and short films.
Catherine Fitchett lives in Christchurch and has had poems published in The Christchurch Press, Takahe, JAAM and various anthologies. She has a day job in accounts but once upon a time, worked as a forensic scientist. This is not as exciting as it sounds, as she wasn’t allowed to make stuff up.
Brianna Houston – I am eleven years old and was born blind. I like swimming, listening to music, reading and listening to books and writing poetry. My Dad says I am a cheeky monkey and I like a good laugh. I love having leaf fights with my friends in autumn. I like being around animals and one day I would love to have a dog of my own.
Leslie McKay lives in the Maruia Valley, on the west coast of the South Island, where she found refuge after the Christchurch earthquakes. A poet and short fiction writer, she is collaborating with Lisa Tui on poem/songs for an EP steeped in the pre and post quake city and also runs poetry workshops there. She has been published online, read her work at Christchurch venues and in 2014 won the Hagley Writers Institute National Poetry Day competition.
Elizabeth Pulford has published stories, poems, and articles for adults and children. Nearing to sixty books for children, from early readers through to Young Adults; and one adult’s novel. Many of her adult short stories won competitions, while three of her children’s books, The Memory Tree, (Scholastic); Call of the Cruins, (Scholastic); and Tussock (Walker Books) reached the finals of the New Zealand Post Children’s Book Awards.
Sandra Simpson lives in Tauranga and is secretary of the Katikati Haiku Pathway Committee, editor of the Haiku NewZ website and South Pacific editor for the annual Red Moon anthology (US). She has won several awards for her haiku and has published her first collection, breath.
Hone Tuwhare was loved and cherished by New Zealanders from all walks of life. Touring tirelessly, Hone shared his talent and inspired audiences in every corner of the country from primary and secondary schools to universities, factories to art galleries and prisons. As he travelled, Hone encouraged others to write, express themselves, create and celebrate life.
Born in 1922 in the small settlement of Kokewai, just south of Kaikohe, Hone spent much of his childhood in Auckland with his father Ben, following the passing of his mother Mihipaea when he was five.
A move to Beach Haven on Auckland’s North Shore in 1963 with the publication of his first book, No Ordinary Sun, in the following year, was life-changing for Hone. The collection was widely acclaimed and established him as a significant and unique presence on the New Zealand literary scene. Over the following four decades he published 12 more collections of poems, some short stories and a play, and immersed himself in writing, performing and touring both in New Zealand and overseas. He was the recipient of many awards and fellowships and was twice winner of the Montana NZ poetry award. Hone was Te Mata Poet Laureate in 1999 and received two honorary doctorates in literature. He was named one of New Zealand’s ten greatest living artists in 2003.
(Thanks to the Hone Tuwhare Charitable Trust website – honetuwhare.org.nz)
Pat White is a poet and essayist who lives in Fairlie. His first collection of poetry, Signposts, was published in 1977, and he has since published a range of collections that draw on his experience living in different places around New Zealand. Pat was the 2010 Writer in Residence at the historic Randell Cottage in Wellington.