Another weekend on a writerly high, this time in the gentle literary fields of Palmerston North. Started yesterday off buying chalk at Warehouse Stationery, followed by solo attack on Palmy pavements. This had the blessing of Genny and Philippa, local librarians, closet bohemians and co-plotters who said (and I quote)"Palmy needs something a little wild!" Chalking Hone Tuwhare poetry next to The Square proved an interesting experience with the wind playing havoc with my chalk and interested shoppers and tourists passing comment(one of whom took a photo of me, hopefully not to pass onto the police). Leather-topped motorbikes kept roaring past and we found out later that Palmy was hosting the national biker's association gathering that weekend, sponsored by Harley Davidson I think. It was an interesting juxtaposition, poetry and motorbikes, and one I feel Hone would have seen the humour in. Even better, bunches of teenagers - most of them Maori - stopped to read the poems out loud, and one of them even said I had a word wrong. Good on him - maybe he was right.
The Palmy library is a gorgeous building, with stairs and ramps and pipes going everywhere and books and posters springing out from unlikely corners. The librarians (well, Genny at least) like to call it the Magic Castle and quite a few local writers seem to use it as a second studio. anyway, more on the Tribute to Hone later, but suffice to say it went off well and mustered an audience of >100 - something for Auckland poets to envy!!