Femrite Festival Blog

  • Tom Pow Writing from Lagos

    Tom Pow is blogging for the Commonwealth Poets United website: click here to read a collated blog of four articles. Frances Hendron, SPL Project Manager, writes: “As you know Tom Pow is in Lagos right now. Receiving his journal blogs in Scotland he is making Lagos sound utterly fascinating, complex and brimming with life. As you Continue Reading

  • Mexico, 2013: A Gift: Reading as Receiving

    Dear Reader, Forgive me for disappearing on you without previous warning. I’ll be truthful and make it worse: I’m not sorry, I won’t explain myself, I won’t apologise, and I won’t change my ways. Will you bear with me in spite of my disappearances? I’d like you to, but it’s up to you. Anyway, I Continue Reading

  • Mexico, 2013: Mexico City, a Metropolis of Exile

    Norma López Suárez’ War Stories So we’ve taken the plane back to Mexico City. As the plane descends – this time in daylight –, it makes it through this brownish-yellowish-orangey dome of smog that extends over the city. In the distance, the mountains; one of them is the Popocatepetl which supposedly has the shape of Continue Reading

  • Reading Uganda

    This is the last day of the ‘Reading Uganda’ festival and starts with a free day. I visit some old haunts, walking all the way from Makerere to the National Theatre via the Ban Café and the Masala Chaat resturant on Dewington Road. It’s pretty hot with a clear sky and the city is incredibly Continue Reading

  • Reading Uganda

    The day starts with a power cut on Makerere campus. Then into the museum with Hilda to set up the poetry workshop – 20 students, most of them also attending the Tuesday session. The atmosphere is much more relaxed this time and we work through a range of individual and collaborative exercises exploring metaphor, image Continue Reading

  • Reading Uganda

    Today I attend a debate on the presence of Ugandan Literature in the secondary school curriculum (they still have the old ‘O’ and ‘A’ level system here). A spokesperson for the National Curriculum Development Council delivered a spirited defense of the current policy, where very few Ugandan writers are featured. She cites a number of Continue Reading

  • Reading Uganda

    Hilda picks me up at 8.00am and takes me through the manic Wandegaya traffic to the Museum of Uganda on Kiira road – a dim hangar-like space, though there are cotton tablecloths on the solid mahogany tables. It’s a slow start to my prose workshop, starting with a shy group of 16 that slowly swells Continue Reading

  • Reading Uganda

    I rise at five-thirty, try some fruit juice and get the airport shuttle. Men in spotless white headdresses and robes guide us into the airport. The flight to Entebbe is on time and after touching down in Addis, we’re flying over the khaki uplands of Kenya and then the deeper more luscious green of Uganda. Continue Reading

  • Reading Uganda

    I set out late afternoon as they were baling hay in meadows along the Lune Valley, a beautiful day with hot sunshine and Ugandan clouds pushed up by thermals into fantastically billowing horizons. A buzzard appears over the motorway, wings and tail fanned in an almost perfect circle of lit plumage. Then the airport and Continue Reading