Documentary Film Screening: “Poetry is an Island”


To celebrate World Poetry Day on Saturday, March 21, 2015, CNCF will be screening a documentary film about the Caribbean Poet Laureate, Derek Walcott, followed by Q&A with the director Ida Does. The film, Poetry is an Island will be screened at the The Harquail Theatre in Grand Cayman. Canapés will be served. Doors open at 6.30pm and screening begins at 7.00pm. Followed by a Q&A with the director.

Description: In ‘Poetry Is An Island’ we share Caribbean moments with Walcott as we visit some of his favorite places, his studio, and St. Lucia home. We travel through St. Lucia and encounter childhood friends whose ‘lives became poetry’ through Walcott’s work. We discover the anger and frustration that the poet holds against the downtime of the arts as he talks to us about the meaning of poetry to him personally, and about the significance of art for humanity. Family members reveal some of the poet’s life challenges, and people who have worked with him speak frankly about their experiences with Walcott. Poetry is an island is an intimate portrait of the man, the poet, and son of the Caribbean: Derek Walcott.

World Poetry Day was declared by UNESCO (the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) in 1999. The purpose of the day is to promote the reading, writing, publishing and teaching of poetry throughout the world and, as the UNESCO session declaring the day says, to “give fresh recognition and impetus to national, regional and international poetry movements”.

Derek Walcott, OBE OCC (born 23 January 1930) is a Saint Lucian poet and playwright. He received the 1992 Nobel Prize in Literature and is currently Professor of Poetry at the University of Essex. His works include the Homeric epic poem Omeros (1990), which many critics view “as Walcott’s major achievement.” In addition to having won the Nobel Prize, Walcott has won many literary awards over the course of his career, including an Obie Award in 1971 for his play Dream on Monkey Mountain, a MacArthur Foundation “genius” award, a Royal Society of Literature Award, the Queen’s Medal for Poetry, the inaugural OCM Bocas Prize for Caribbean Literature and the 2011 T. S. Eliot Prize for his book of poetry White Egrets.

When Derek Walcott saw a picture in the paper of US President Barack Obama carrying around a copy of his collected poems, Walcott says he was flattered, “But for me, what that means is it’s nothing to do with me so much as a fact if you have a president who reads poetry, there’s hope because poetry tries to tell the truth.”

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For a a clip of the documentary HERE

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