On the second Tuesday of September, the Poetry Night at Sappho will feature Ali Whitelock, Magdalena Ball, Rico Craig and Vivian Pham, plus the usual open section. Drinks and tapas at the bar. Free entry! Sign-up for open mic is from 6:30am on the night at the venue.
ALI WHITELOCK is a Scottish poet living in Australia. ‘a brief letter to the sea about a couple of things’ is her 4th book. Her previous collections include ‘and my heart crumples like a coke can’ and ‘the lactic acid in the calves of your despair’ (long-listed for the Australian Literature Society Gold Medal in 2021). Her memoir, ‘poking seaweed with a stick & running away from the smell’ was published to critical acclaim in Australia & the UK: www.aliwhitelock.com
MAGDALENA BALL is a novelist, poet, reviewer, interviewer, vice president of Flying Island Books, and managing editor of Compulsive Reader. Her stories, editorials, poetry, reviews and interviews have appeared in a wide number of journals and anthologies, and have won local and international awards. She is the author of several novels and poetry books, most recently, ‘Bobish’, a verse-memoir published by Puncher & Wattmann in 2023. Find out more at her website: www.magdalenaball.com
RICO CRAIG is a poet, writer and workshop facilitator. His poetry has been awarded prizes or shortlisted for the Montreal Poetry Prize, Val Vallis Prize, Newcastle Poetry Prize, Dorothy Porter Poetry Prize and University of Canberra Poetry Prize. ‘Bone Ink’ (UWAP), his first poetry collection, was winner of the 2017 Anne Elder Award and shortlisted for the Kenneth Slessor Poetry Prize 2018. His most recent collections ‘Our Tongues Are Songs’ (2021) and ‘Nekhau’ (2022) are published by Recent Work Press.
VIVIAN PHAM is a Vietnamese novelist, essayist, poet and aspiring folklorist from southwestern Sydney. In high school she wrote a novel called ‘The Coconut Children’, which was published in March 2020 by Penguin Random House. In 2021 she won the Sydney Morning Herald Best Young Australian Novelist Award and the Matt Richell Award for New Writer of the Year for her work. She has twice attended the International Congress of Youth Voices, a summit for young activists nominated by nonprofits around the world for their writing and engagement. Vivian holds a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Philosophy and Creative Writing from Western Sydney University. She is currently perfecting her Bún bò Huế recipe, and writing the film and stage adaptations of The Coconut Children.
The open section will follow the guest poets. To read in the open section, sign-up occurs from 6:30pm on the night at the venue. Up to 10 readers can read for up to 2 mins each.
IMAGE: Dane Lovett, ‘Garden in a parking lot’, 2023, oil and acrylic on canvas, 199.5 x 228.3 cm.