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Temple of Literature finds its muse

Update: February, 20/2008 - 00:00

Temple of Literature finds its muse


Of sonnets and stanzas: Poet Da Thao Phuong (standing) reads poems with two performers. — VNS File Photo

HA NOI — Poetry readings will mark Viet Nam Poetry Day today at the capital’s Van Mieu (Temple of Literature).

Poetry Day was established five years ago by the Viet Nam Writers Association to honour the nation’s greatest poets as well as encourage young poets to share their work, according to the association chairman, poet Huu Thinh. The holiday is scheduled during the Nguyen Tieu Festival on the 15th day of the first lunar month.

The poetry readings, along with musical performances, will begin this morning at 8:30am.

"We have decided to invest more effort into organising poetry readings with a view to change the way poetry is perceived by audiences," said writer Vo Thi Xuan Ha.

"I have seen poetry readings in many other countries. Many Vietnamese people think that poetry reading means to bring strange things to the stage. But, in fact the poet becomes the artist by presenting the literary work in different ways and accompanied by music," said poet Hoang Hung.

Other poets scheduled to present their works include Vi Thuy Linh, Phan Huyen Thu, Nguyen Vinh Tien, Da Thao Phuong, Ngo Tu Lap and emerging poets like Ho Huy Son, Doan Van Mat and Chu Thi Minh Hue, as well as Mong poet Chu Thi Minh Hue from Ha Giang Province, who will read works in both the Vietnamese and Mong languages.

Poet and composer Nguyen Vinh Tien will invite a ca tru singer and a dan day musician to perform three poems. "This will be a combination of modern poetry, ca tru and folk music," said Tien.

The young poet Ho Huy Son’s performance will be accompanied by two artists from the Central Puppet Theatre.

Sixteen tables will be set up on the Thai Hoc ground with a peach tree to allow fans and writers to gather and discuss their inspirations.

Other activities will include calligraphy, parallel sentence poetry, poetry painting, and improvisational poetry competitions on the Thai Mieu grounds.

The Kim Dong Publishing House will display books to introduce poets like Le Thanh Tong, Nguyen Trai, Nguyen Du; Nguyen Binh, Xuan Dieu, Che Lan Vien, and Han Mac Tu as well as wartime poets like Nguyen Dinh Thi, and Pham Tien Duat.

Two new books of poetry will be introduced on the occasion. One collects poems related to turning points in the life of late poet Tran Dan. The other is a translation by poet Huu Viet entitled Heartsongs, which won an award last year from the Viet Nam Writers Association. — VNS

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