by Frank Giorno
The shores of Lake Timiskaming, on the traditional lands of the Algonquin People,were alive with the sounds of poetry, music and the occasional sightings of William Drummonds ghost last weekend as the 11th annual Spring Pulse Poetry, Music and Art Festival successfully completed another edition.
On Friday June 1 at 1:00 pm ,Ottawa poet Susan McMaster launched her latest book Haunted at Lumber Baron’s House, 604 Brewster Street in Haileybury. McMaster’s reading was followed by a followed by a writing workshop that offered tips on how to edit poems for unwanted repetition.
In the evening the action moved to the Paul Penna Cobalt Public Library where Ann Margetson was re-inducted as Poet Laureate and Emma Laughlin was awarded the Volunteer of the Year award.
But the focus of the night was the celebration of Cobalt’s renowned poet Dr. William Drummond, who during the beginning of the 20th century was one of the most read poets in the English-speaking language.
An hour of selected readings of his poetry preceded the Dr. William Henry Drummond Poetry Awards Ceremony.
As in past events the ghost of Dr. Drummond roamed delightfully over the celebration
The winners of the 2018 Drummond Poetry Awards are:
First Place : Gypsum Girl by Alia Wall
Second Place: As Rags Become Rugs by Wendy Jean MacLean
Third Place: Open”by Debbie Amirault Camelin
On Saturday morning a group of 12 poets participated in reading from their works or poems they admited during an open mic event at the Classic Theatre in Cobalt. The participating poets were:
Susan McMaster, Ottawa
Honey Novick, Toronto,
Della Dean, Cobalt,
David Brydges, Cobalt
Ann Margetson, Cobalt
Yvonne Francoeur, Cobalt
John Yates, Bowmanville
Victor Zurkowski, Toronto
David Dawson, Sharbot Lake
Linda-Bea Chambers, Cobalt
Frank Giorno, Timmins
Tiffany Stow, New Liskeard
After the conclusion of the open mic readings, the group convened at the Paul Penna Library for the announcement of the Jim Sargent Youth Poetry Writing Awards and luncheon compliments of the library board, and Marvyn Morrison was inducted into the Poetry Hall of Fame.
The annual Poet’s Parade headed by Haileybury Legion Pipe Band led the poets to the Dr. Pollard Poetry Park where a plaque honouring Marvyn Morrison was placed by a newly planted pine tree.
At the Poet’s Park, Marilyn Chevrier-Wills, Timiskaming First Nation elder/teacher along with her husband John Wills plus drummers Carole and Karen performed a welcoming song and opening prayer ceremony.
The afternoon ceremony at Poet’s Park also honoured the Silver Shadow – White Dog of Cobalt with yellow ribbons remembrance tied to a near by tree close to the White Dog Memorial. The reminded people to fight against animal abuse or cruelty.
An open mic featuring poetry,music and storytelling was held by the gazebo.
The festivities concluded with an after party at the Meteor Cafe featuring Ottawa folk singer, Vienna D’Amato Hall who performed two sets of original songs plus a few of her favourite songs by others.