Imtiaz Dharker Readings

Imtiaz Dharker Readings

‘Imtiaz Dharker’s poetry shines a light in the dark… You cannot hear her perform without being somehow transformed by the experience. Witty, wise, profound and moving, her work crosses continents. Carol Ann Duffy once said if there was to be a world laureate, it would be Dharker. Agreed.’ – Jackie Kay, The Guardian


Imtiaz Dharker was awarded the Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry for her fifth collection Over the Moon.  Her sixth, Luck is the Hook, was published by Bloodaxe on 29 March 2018.   Imtiaz  was poet-in-residence at the London Book Fair in April 2018, and read at a number of festivals in 2018, including Cúirt International Festival of Literature (as a headline poet), Newcastle Poetry Festival, Edinburgh International Book Festival, Durham Book Festival (Schools event) and Ilkley Literature Festival, at which she was Poet-in-Residence. She was 'In Conversation' at the Hong Kong International Literary Festival and read at the Woodstock Poetry Festival in November. Imtiaz Dharker headlined at StAnza, Scotland's International Poetry Festival, in 2019.

Imtiaz Dharker was The London Book Fair's first ever 'Poet of the Fair' in April 2018).  A five-minute interview Imtiaz gave to The London Book Fair can be read here.  She was also  Poet in Residence at Ilkley Literature Festival in October 2018.

Links to interviews and radio features with Imtiaz Dharker are here.

Imtiaz Dharker was Chester Literature Festival Guest Director and Artist in Residence for November and December 2019. An installation of her drawings and poetry covers the spaces of Storyhouse Chester  until November 2020.  More on Imtiaz's residency here.




Thursday 30th July 2020, 5pm, Inside Writing Festival

Imtiaz Dharker closed the Inside Writing festival on 30 July. This digital festival has taken place instead of the Newcastle Poetry Festival this year.

'Join us for the final INSIDE WRITING event, an exclusive poetry reading from Newcastle University Chancellor, and Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry Winner, Imtiaz Dharker. '

Imtiaz Dharker read three new poems for the graduating students and for young people during this pandemic: 'For You, Whose Moment is Due', See Through' and 'Answering Back', as well as her new poem 'Cranes Lean in', written during lockdown.

She read  from her recent Bloodaxe collections Over the Moon ('Speech Balloon', 'I Swear', 'Waiting for Crossrail', 'At Smithfield, waiting to get in', 'Medium') and Luck is the Hook ('Flight Radar', 'The Trick', This Tide of Humber'), as well as poems from older collections: I Speak for the Devil  (They’ll say, ‘She must be from another country'’), The Terrorist at My Table ('The Right Word') and Postcards from god ('Living Space'), among others.


Thursday 4 June 2020, 7pm, Makar to Makar

Jackie Kay in conversation with Imtiaz Dharker

Imtiaz Dharker was in conversation with the Scottish Makar (National Poet of Scotland) Jackie Kay on Makar to Makar on 4 June, with music from Suzanne Bonnar. A moving mix of poetry, conversation and song.  Imtiaz read poems from several of her Bloodaxe collections:  Luck is the Hook (‘The trick’, ‘Chaudhri Sher Mobarik looks at the loch’, Over the Moon ('Speech Balloon' 'I swear', 'In Wales, wanting to be Italian, 'Hiraeth, Old Bombay') and I Speak for the Devil  (They’ll say, ‘She must be from another country'’), along with some new poems.

A separate clip from the end of the event, in which Imtiaz reads 'I swear' and her new poem 'Cranes Lean in', has been posted here. The full video of this wonderful event is posted below.

Links to all Makar to Makar episodes, with full credits to all the poems read – including Jackie Kay’s poems published by Bloodaxe - are here.


[01 June 2020]

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