exciting evening of poetry for Asian Heritage Month. I have met
Evelyn a number of times, and even booked her for Asian Heritage Month
events when I helped to program events for explorASIAN. Evelyn is an
exciting reader with thoughtful penetrating words and images.
I also first met Senator Vivienne Poy in Ottawa, when I was working for
explorASIAN in 2002. We discovered that we were related through
the marriage of her husband's aunt to my grandmother's eldest
brother. What a small world it is! She has been the patron
senator of spreading Asian Heritage month throughoutthe country, and was the first Chinese-Canadian appointed to the senate.
Evening of Poetry with Evelyn Lau and
introducing Indran Amirthanayagam (poet)
7pm to 8:30pm
Free admission – Open to the Public – Age 19+
Wild Ginger Asian
Fusion & Lounge
International Village (2nd Floor) –
With Special Guest
Senator Vivienne Poy (the first Canadian Senator of Asian
The Globe and Mail
named Evelyn Lau one of the most influential people in the arts.
The author of nine books, including
Runaway: Diary of a Street Kid, Fresh Girls and Other Stories, Choose Me and the novel Other Women, Evelyn considers
herself more the poet than the prose writer.
Her poetry and short fiction have appeared in over a hundred
publications in and the US,
including Best American Poetry 1992, Kenyon Review,
Quarterly Review, The Southern Review, Malahat Review and Descant. Several of her books have been
translated into a dozen languages.
Evelyn Lau's first poetry collection, You Are Not Who You Claim,
won the Milton Acorn People's Poetry Prize; her second, Oedipal Dreams, was shortlisted for the Governor
General's Award, making Lau, then 20, the youngest person ever nominated. She was named Air Canada's
“Most promising Writer Under 30”, and
has won the Vantage Woman of Originality Award.. Her new collection of poems is
Evelyn has read and
discussed her work at festivals, colleges and universities around the world,
and has been writer in residence at
UBC's Creative Writing Program, the Varuna Writers' Centre in ,
and Vancouver Community College. She
has also taught at Simon Fraser University.
Evelyn's bestseller “Runaway: Diary of a Street Kid” was broadcast
as a CBC-TV “Movie of the Week”, starring in her first movie
Amirthanayagam writes poetry in
English, Spanish and French. He also translates from Spanish. His books include The Elephants of
Reckoning (1994 Paterson Poetry Prize), El Infierno de los Pajaros,
Ceylon R.I.P., and El Hombre que
Recoge Nidos. Amirthanayagam’s translations of Mexican poet
Manuel Ulaca were included in
Reversible Monuments: Contemporary Mexican Poetry.
Recent translations of Mexican poet Julian Herbert were published
in the Americas issue of BOMB. His
next book The Splintered Face: tsunami poems will be published in the US in late
Amirthanayagam has received
fellowships from the US Mexico Fund for Culture for translations and
the New York Foundation for the Arts
and the MacDowell Colony for poems. Amirthanayagam’s essays have been published in the Hindu
(India), Reforma and El Norte ( ), The Daily News (Sri Lanka)
and the ( ). His poems have been anthologized in The United States of Poetry,
ALOUD: Voices from the Nuyorican
Poets Café, The Open Boat: Poems from Asian America, Only the Sea Keeps:
Tsunami Poems, among others.
Amirthanayagam performs his poems with the group Non-Jazz.
He also directed Palabras en Vuelo:
Poesia en Conversacion, a program about poetry for public television
in . His next book in Spanish
Sol Camuflado is being revised for publication. Amirthanayagam won
the Poetry Prize of the Juegos
Florales in , in 2006.
Amirthanayagam was born in
He has been a
member of the United States Foreign Service since 1993. He has served his
adoptive country in ,
, Cote d’Ivoire, , and now as Public Affairs Officer at the United States Consulate General,
Vivienne Poy is an author,
entrepreneur, fashion designer, and historian, and is the first Canadian
of Asian descent to be appointed to
the Senate of Canada. She was appointed to the Senate in 1998.
She served as Chancellor of the University of Toronto
from 2003 until 2006. She founded Vivienne Poy Mode in 1981 and over the following fourteen years enjoyed great
success in fashion design, manufacturing and retail. She is currently Chairwoman of Lee Tak Wai Holdings
Ltd., and a member of the Board of the Bank of East Asia ( ).
A Motion to designate the month
of May as Asian Heritage Month was introduced in the Canadian Senate
by Senator Vivienne Poy on May 29,
2001, and seconded by Senator Pat Carney. Senators Sheila Finestone,
Noel A. Kinsella, Nicholas W. Taylor
and Laurier LaPierre spoke in favour of it.
In December, 2001, the Senate of Canada passed a motion officially
designating May as Asian Heritage Month.
Presented by explorASIAN and Ricepaper