Happy Heritage Day!

From all of us at Ulwazi, we wish you a pleasant and peaceful Heritage Day! For those of you in Durban and looking for something to do, there is an interesting event on at the Green Hub.

The Centre for Creative Arts (University of KwaZulu-Natal) and Poetry Africa will present a special Heritage Day programme as part of the 100 000 Poets for Change project. This bold endeavour, initiated by Californian poets Michael Rothenberg and Terri Carriòn, will see worldwide poetic action on September 24th, in 500 cities in 93 countries across the planet. The project invites poets and poetry organisations everywhere to compile their own programmes around social, environmental, and political change.

The Poetry Africa event in Durban, supported by the National Lottery Distribution Trust Fund, will especially focus on environmental challenges, as poets, musicians, artists, and humanitarians gather in a collaborative effort to drive environmental awareness.

This free outdoor event takes place from 15h30 at Durban’s Green Hub, an environmental sanctuary nestled among trees near Blue Lagoon, where the Umgeni River enters the Indian Ocean. The programme includes live music, open mic opportunities for poets to express their thoughts and feelings about the environment and related issues, and a poetry weaving session where everybody will be able to take part by writing on a sheet of cloth a few lines of poetry focusing on the environment. Guest participants include Gcina Mhlophe, Patrick Bond, Busisiwa Gqulu, Sakhile STP Shabalala, Siphamandla Xaba, and the New Diva Jazz Ensemble. A riverside clean-up commences at 14h00 and is part of a full day of Green Hub activities such as the 2nd River Revive Bicycle Ride (09h00), Green Info Booths (11h00), and Greening Workshops (13h00).

The evening will conclude with a special sunset film screening of the Lucy Walker film Waste Land, which won three awards at the 2010 Durban International Film Festival – Best Documentary, the Amnesty International Award and the Audience Choice Award.

A free shuttle service will run between Aliwal Street (opposite Exhibition Centre) and the Green Hub, from 10h00 until 21h00.

The 100 000 Poets for Change programme is aligned to the newly formed World Poetry Movement (WPM), which although only two months in existence has already been joined by 100 international poetry festivals and over 500 poets from all continents. Poets and poetry organisations are invited to join the WPM and strengthen the voice of poets, and add African representation to this growing international organisation.

Poets can register at worldpoetrymovement@gmail.com.

The 100 000 Poets for Change project is an advance programme for the 15th Poetry Africa international poetry festival which will take place in Durban from 17 to 22 October 2011. See www.cca.ukzn.ac.za for more information.

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