kuril dhagun had the privilege of partnering with Queensland Poetry Festival once again for 2017.
We were lucky enough to have QPF Indigenous Poet in Residence Ali Cobby Eckermann along for a special Poetry Writing workshop with budding poets, and she stuck around to be our guest speaker at Night by the Fire talk. The Indigenous Poet-in-Residence Program is an ongoing project of QPF, proudly sponsored by ATSICHS. There was a great turnout to the workshop with Ali, as participants got in touch with their creative side to uncover their inner-poet through articulating their own personal stories of memory and emotion. I went along and tried my best at, what I thought, was a testing session. Everyone involved on the day got a lot out of listening to Ali’s approach to her writing and learning her techniques but also embracing and finding your own style.
Following the poetry workshop, we hosted the next installment in our Night by the Fire talks with Ali later that evening. As the Indigenous Poet-in-Residence for 2017, the Talking Circle was packed with an eager audience ready to tune into Ali’s amazing story. In a candid and honest talk, Ali opened up to the audience about her life and read intimate verses from one of her latest novels ‘Inside my Mother’.
Ali’s short literary career is already highly decorated, with her journey beginning in 2009 with her first poetry collection ‘little bit long time’. Most recently, Ali won the 2017 Windham-Campbell award for poetry from Yale University which was a major achievement and came with a life changing $215,000 prize.
It was an absolute pleasure to have Ali in our spaces this year, and to listen and learn from a truly inspiring woman. kuril dhagun would like to once again thank Queensland Poetry Festival for partnering with us to present these two events, and we look forward to working with them and other brilliant Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander writers in the future.