As the current NZ Poet Laureate, Vincent O’Sullivan is following in the footsteps of his predecessors (Michele Leggott, Ian Wedde and Cilla McQueen) and contributing a regular blog to the Laureate site.
Each poet has used this opportunity in quite different ways. Vincent states his aim at the outset: ‘The obvious point of this site is to celebrate and present the breadth of experience and formal variety that poetry embraces. I shall be inviting a guest poet to contribute work of their own, and to select a poem by a living writer they value, as well as a poem from an earlier era that continues to matter to them.’
He also plans to showcase poets who have been persecuted as a writer. The first is Ghanaian Kofi Awoonor, killed by terrorists on the day he was to appear at a literary festival.
The first invited poet is Jennifer Compton.
This is a wonderful initiative on the part of Vincent — an invitation that will be of real benefit to New Zealand poetry communities, and to all those who love poetry.
See here for The Laureate site.