Monday, October 11, 2010

A memorable poetry soiree with Peter Bakowski

Soiree. What a lovely word. First used in the early 1800s, it derives from the French word soir meaning evening, and it means an evening party or social gathering, especially one held for a particular purpose [1]. Last Saturday night Sweetheart Vivienne and I hosted a poetry soiree. Six weeks ago Peter Bakowski, a successful Melbourne poet [2, 3] emailed Sweetheart Vivienne that he’d be in Tasmania in early October for the Tasmanian Poetry Festival [4], and asking if we’d be interested in a private house poetry reading. We immediately agreed. We invited 12 people who were all excited by the idea and accepted pronto. So 17 people attended including Peter, his wife Helen and their son Walter. Befitting the occasion, the food people brought was sumptuous [5]. Sweetheart Vivienne introduced Peter who spoke about and then read poems from several of his books, and patiently answered questions. After the main course he served up a second helping of his wonderful poetry. Peter, a tall and thin 55-year-old, is courteous and humble. He said he writes ‘clear poetry’, i.e. poetry that’s accessible to the average person. And it is so. Undoubtedly. He mentioned his favourite poets include Leonard Cohen and Ted Kooser (who, I wrote in early 2009, are mine too; though I was a poetry plebeian) [6]. Last Saturday night, the latter started to change. What a successful and memorable soiree it was [7]. Grateful thanks, Peter.

1 comment:

Chrows25 aka Leather Woman said...

Soiree, such a lovely word, my Mom and Dad would attend soirees occasionally, I remember the beautiful velvet stole she wore.
Hmmm, I was scrolling down and wondering what on earth I was seeing without context they looked a bit scary, but i am sure the grissini were actually delicious.
Poet, one of the hardest professions with which to support oneself.