Of bagpipes and pumpkin beer

Photo: Amanda Roth

“Martin’s quick-paced tempo led the audience through a whirlwind of intimate and surreal thought that was entirely engaging.”
— Amanda Roth, Grey Borders Reading Series

         The September 23 Grey Borders Reading began on a surreal note as the poets were ushered onto the stage by Shelby, a young woman playing bagpipes. She happened to be at the Niagara Artists Centre before the reading, preparing for the next day’s annual parade through downtown St. Catharines to celebrate grapes and wine, without which the history of surrealism just wouldn’t have been the same.
         And the surreality of the evening, fueled by wine and spiraling into the weirdness that poetry fiends crave, intensified with the poets’ readings: Shannon Maguire, Aisha Sasha John, Zorras, and yours untruly.
         Afterward, we spilled into the night and settled in a pub lined with giant vats of pumpkin beer, spinning ever more exquisite corpses.


Thanks to Shelby, Eric Schmaltz (curator), the Niagara Artists Centre, and also to Amanda Roth for her photos and report on the evening.


Camille Martin
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