Migrant Voices: Choman Hardi, Pam Zinnemann-Hope and Bridget Pearse Friday 7 July

Migrant Voices

Choman Hardi, Pam Zinnemann-Hope poets

Bridget Pearse on viola

Friday 7 July 2017, 8pm

Sadly this event has been postponed until a later date.

Choman Hardi

Choman HardiChoman Hardi is a world-class poet with a passionate interest in human stories that spring from the experience of migration. Her intensely moving, beautiful readings are impossible to forget. Hosted by Pam Zinnemann-Hope, author of On Cigarette Papers, the evening is accentuated by Bridget Pearse playing Glazunov, Bloch’s Hebridean suite and Telemann on unaccompanied viola.

Born in 1974, Choman Hardi is a Kurdish poet who twice became a refugee herself while growing up in Iraq, first after her family was forced to flee the country when she was a child and again when she was a teenager. The daughter of poet Ahmad Hardi, her family fled to Iran in 1975 after the Algiers Accord but returned to Iraq after a general amnesty in 1979. They were forced to move again in 1988 during the Anfal campaign.

image002She arrived in United Kingdom in 1993 as a refugee and studied psychology and philosophy at Oxford and University College London. She has published three volumes of poetry in Kurdish and went on to publish two collections of English poems, Life for Us (Bloodaxe Books, 2004) and Considering the Women (Bloodaxe Books, 2015), which was shortlisted for the Forward Prize in 2016. Her articles have appeared in Modern Poetry in Translation.

She completed her PhD research at the University of Kent, developing an interest in how people, particularly widowed women, cope with the effects of genocide. Her broader sympathies, for ordinary people coping in extraordinary times, are expressed throughout her poetry.

Choman Hardi’s poem ‘At the Border, 1979’ is printed below.

Pam Zinnemann-Hope

2011 portraits 027Pam Zinnemann-Hope’s first collection, On Cigarette Papers, was short-listed for the Seamus Heaney Centre Prize. She adapted it for Radio 4’s Afternoon Play in which she acted alongside Eleanor Bron, Greg Weis et al.

She has been a poetry reader on Radio 3 and her poetry has won significant prizes.

Pam is published in numerous anthologies, and in Who’s In The Next Room. She is also a children’s author.

There will be 4 slots for poems from the floor, one poem each, of not more than 50 lines. If you would like to read please contact Pam Zinnemann-Hope pam@zhope.co.uk

Bridget Pearse on viola


Elegy by Glazunov

Selection from Bloch’s Hebridean suite

Last movement of Telemann

Bridget Pearse was taught the violin from the age of 11 by Joyce Preston in Cornwall. Quickly developing a love of chamber music, especially Baroque, at St Anthony and in chamber orchestras, at 16 she gained a place at Wells Cathedral School to study the violin and viola. A regular member of the Bolerian consort in Cornwall, she has continued to play music of all kinds, including a lot of improvisation. Now living and teaching in Dorset with her two daughters, she has worked on many local projects including Nikki Northover’s dance shows, and Burton Bradstock’s music festival. She has worked with major recording artists and played for Channel 4 ‘s 4 Minute Wonders.

Sladers Yard’s acclaimed Café will offer a choice of three main courses for the £15 ticket, one meat, one seafood and a vegetarian option. Let us know if you are vegan and we will happily cater for you. Starters, desserts, cheese boards drinks and coffees will all be available á la carte.

Please phone 01308 459511 to book

At the Border, 1979 by Choman Hardi

‘It is your last check-in point in this country!’
We grabbed a drink –
soon everything would taste different.

The land under our feet continued
divided by a thick iron chain.

My sister put her leg across it.
‘Look over here,’ she said to us,
‘my right leg is in this country
and my left leg in the other.’
The border guards told her off.

My mother informed me: We are going home.
She said that the roads are much cleaner
the landscape is more beautiful
and people are much kinder.

Dozens of families waited in the rain.
‘I can inhale home,’ somebody said.
Now our mothers were crying. I was five years old
standing by the check-in point
comparing both sides of the border.

The autumn soil continued on the other side
with the same colour, the same texture.
It rained on both sides of the chain.

We waited while our papers were checked,
our faces thoroughly inspected.
Then the chain was removed to let us through.
A man bent down and kissed his muddy homeland.
The same chain of mountains encompassed all of us.

1 Response to Migrant Voices: Choman Hardi, Pam Zinnemann-Hope and Bridget Pearse Friday 7 July

  1. Pingback: Rosie Jackson poetry and Frances Eustace on viola da gamba 30 March | Sladers Yard

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