Mohawk a guest
The poetry of Canadian Mohawk writer Janet Marie Rogers comes to Porirua this week.
This year’s Toi Maori Aotearoa guest, Rogers, from the Six Nations territory in southern Ontario, is visiting New Zealand to take part in cultural events around the country.
On Thursday evening she will take part in a poetry reading with Apirana Taylor at Pataka Museum.
Rogers, was born in Vancouver and began her creative career as a visual artist. In 1996 she began writing and has worked and studied in poetry, short fiction, science fiction, playwriting, spoken word performance poetry and video poetry.
Her literary passions are her native heritage, feminism, historical territories, human love, sexuality and spirit.
On Friday night Rogers will blend with the contemporary music of Aotearoa in a performance by The Waiata and the Word collective, in Raumati South.
‘‘This will be a great opportunity to introduce her to our local community and welcome her to our end of the world,’’ said The Waiata and the Word member Troy Hunt.
‘‘Boggy [Paul Bognuda] and Lindsay Rabbitt were talking about having another gig, so I suggested we invite Janet to take part – our first international collaboration.’’
Hunt said the performance could be ‘‘totally by the seat of our pants’’ although he was hoping they might have some rehearsal time together.
‘‘She has had a look at our music on YouTube and knows our background. We need to find a soundscape to play behind some of her poems.’’
Usually the group interspersed Rabbitt’s poetry with their songs. ‘‘This performance will be different. We will open, then she will perform her poetry with us playing our music where we can on a couple of her works, then The Waiata and the Word will finish.’’
Hunt plays guitar and traditional Maori flutes, the koauau and putorino. He and his son Luther will be creating sounds to accompany Rogers at the Auckland Arts Festival in March, at the launch of Ihimaera, a recording of 12 of Witi Ihimaera’s poems by leading New Zealand musicians.
Hunt and Taylor speak the word at Pataka from 7pm to 8pm on Thursday. Rogers’ Kapiti performance, with The Waiata and the Word, is on Friday, 7.30pm, at Lembas Cafe, Raumati South, $10.
Visiting performer: Touring Canadian Mohawk Janet Marie Rogers is bringing her poetry to Raumati South.