ISF2020: It Could Be Verse: Poetry for a Pandemic

Event Information

Share this event

Date and Time

Event description
ISF2020: It Could Be Verse: Poetry for a Pandemic

About this Event

“Poems…. cross the battlefields, tending the wounded, listening to the wild monologues of the triumphant or the fearful." — John Berger
“You say, end this poem here, and wait for what is next. I will. Poems are rough notations for the music we are.” - Rumi


For centuries, poetry has been the literary form that has told the stories of our times. Poets have been the chroniclers of our battles, the heralds of our celebrations and the ones who have offered us solace in times of need. A series of intimate readings by outstanding poets from around the world, offer us literature as shelter, medicine and mirror.

Join hosts Anjalica Solomon (poet, spoken word artist, organiser) and Sirish Rao (ISF Artistic Director) as they take you around the world to listen to:

  • Shabana Azmi – Indian cinema icon and theatre actor
  • Sadhu Binning - Bi-lingual author, editor, educator and influential advocate for Punjabi literature
  • Christie Lee Charles - Global Musqueam performer and Poet Laureate of Vancouver
  • Jillian Christmas – Celebrated poet, organizer, and activist
  • Ivan Coyote – Award winning author and natural born storyteller
  • Tishani Doshi – Writer and dancer, winner of the Forward Prize for poetry
  • Phinder Dulai – Noted author of three books of poetry
  • Arthur Flowers – Novelist, performance poet and literary bluesman
  • Meharoona Ghani – Writer, poet, public speaker, truth seeker
  • Sheniz Janmohamed – Writer, spoken word artist and land artist
  • Chelene Knight – 2019 Writers’ Trust ‘Rising Star’
  • Aja Monet – Surrealist blues poet, storyteller, and organizer
  • Bif Naked – Celebrated and notorious performer, and tireless humanitarian
  • Shazia Hafiz Ramji – Winner of the City of Vancouver Book Award
  • Ajmer Rode – Winner of the ‘Best Overseas Punjabi Author’ award
  • Renee Saklikar – Poet Laureate of the City of Surrey
  • Leanne Simpson – Renowned Michi Saagiig Nishnaabeg scholar, writer and artist
  • Jeet Thayil – Booker Prize nominated writer, poet and musician

Watch it on our Facebook page or YouTube channel.

Accessibility information: The YouTube Live version of this event will be live-captioned (Please note there are no captions in the Facebook Live version). For captions, please attend on our YouTube channel.

About Indian Summer Festival

ISF is committed to continuing programming in the virtual world during the COVID-19 crisis. We strive to bring our customary care and quality to our work, and ensure that artists, vendors and team members are paid fair wages. Your support in this time helps us to keep the arts alive. Please consider making a donation:

Find out more at

Event Supporting Partner: Hari Sharma Foundation

Indian Summer Festival is made possible thanks to the wonderful support of:

Share with friends

Date and Time


Online Event

Save This Event

Event Saved