On Tuesday, October 24th, author Bruce Meyer visited UNBSJ to read from his collections of poetry and discuss his book, Portraits of Canadian Writers, for the Lorenzo Reading Series. Chock full of lovely verse, laughs, and a lot to learn, Meyer’s reading was a smash hit for all in attendance.
His featured book in the reading series this year (Portraits of Canadian Writers) tells short stories about the vast amount of unique Canadian writers that he has met in his lifetime, from former Poet Laureate, George Elliott Clarke (George & Rue), to the world-renowned Margaret Atwood (The Handmaid’s Tale). His stories are funny, heartwarming and real, and will leave readers with a thirst to delve deeper into Canadian literature.
His reading last Tuesday was a prolific experience which drew on society’s frequency to “bronze” authors – or, rather, to put them on a pedestal until they no longer appear human. Meyer was adamant in explaining that all of the authors who he met were, and are, real people: George Elliott Clarke hitchhiked to Toronto to meet him; Margaret Atwood helped him to improve his interviewing skills; and Leonard Cohen played him a first draft of “Hallelujah”. These were people who he had conversations, shared meals, and spent time with; they are more than just bronze statues standing in a city park.
“These are real people,” he professed, “I met them. I was there.”
The evening was enriched with his stories of authors still with us and of authors who have passed, and one could see how all of these people profoundly influenced him when he shared his creative works with the crowd. Reading a plethora of poems and short stories, including “Dandelion Wine”, “On the Judgement of Dogs”, “Counting Spider Plants” and “Sunday Drives”, Meyer provided the audience with an insight into his works that was greatly enjoyed by all.
The next Lorenzo Reading Series event will take place this Thursday in the Hazen Hall Lecture Theatre. Author Ann Eriksson will be reading selections from her book, The Performance, and the event will start at 6:30pm. Attendance is free and all are welcome; as always, the event will conclude with a Q&A session and light refreshments will be provided.