The Toronto International Festival of Authors (TIFA) is Canada’s largest and longest-running literary festival, presented with a vision to inspire, empower and connect through the art of stories. Join us annually every fall, to meet, hear and learn from the world’s leading contemporary authors.
In 2022, the 43rd Edition of the Toronto International Festival of Authors will take place live and in person at Toronto’s Harbourfront Centre, with additional online offerings to complement the programme. Building on the potential of the Festival’s location, in particular the outdoor spaces, TIFA will enhance the experience for audiences and authors, opening up new creative opportunities to develop the Festival programme and activities. Programme information can be found on the TIFA Website.
For the festival, I have been asked to take part in a project for the ReRead Series, responding to T.S. Eliot’s The Waste Land. TIFA, in partnership with Aké Arts and Books Festival and Bristol Ideas has invited 12 poets from Canada, Nigeria and the United Kingdom to write a poem responding to TS Eliot’s work:
Published in 1922, The Waste Land ushered in a new age of modernism. A text written out of Eliot’s despair – both his personal turmoil and what he saw as Europe’s post-war malaise and fears of cultural collapse following the destruction of the First World War, – The Waste Land has clear relevance in 2022. Eliot’s work was published three years after the start of the Spanish Flu pandemic; the world has faced many financial and health crises since 2008; a resulting growth in inequality; polarization and a crisis of democracy; and hanging over all is climate change and a new waste land with the destruction of biodiversity and a world burning.
I will participate in The Waste Land Project in Three Ways:
1. September 23 to October 2: The Waste Land Project Installation
Participating poets’ ReRead texts will be incorporated into an installation piece in which recordings of the poets reading their poems made accessible smart devices via QR codes placed around the Festival Campus.
2. September 25: Theater of War: The Waste Land Project
Poets from Ukraine, Toronto, and other parts of the world come together across borders and boundaries to present readings and reflections on each other’s poems as a catalyst for dialogue, healing, connection and community.
3. September 30: The Re-Read: A.F. Moritz on T.S. Eliot’s The Waste Land
I will be joined by fellow poet John Reibetanz as we read and discuss our responses to The Waste Land.
For more information, visit the TIFA Website.