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UEA MA Poetry Showcase & Skin Can Hold, Vahni Capildeo Launc

Friday 31 May 2019, 19:00 to 19:00

Dragon Hall
115-123 King Street


Please join us to celebrate both the launch of Vahni Capildeo's third Carcanet collection, Skin Can Hold, and the UEA MA Poetry Showcase, with an evening of readings and performances, discussion and drinks. Vahni Capildeo will perform from the new work alongside Paige Smeaton. Refreshments will be provided, and copies of the book will be available to purchase. Attendance is free and all are welcome. Please let us know you can make it by reserving a free Eventbrite ticket.

Vahni Capildeo, author of Measures of Expatriation (Forward Prize, 2016), returns with a third Carcanet volume, Skin Can Hold. The collection marks an adventurous departure for a pen-and-paper poet. These texts are the fruit of collaborative experiments in theatre, dance and other performance, drawing on burlesque and mime as well as Capildeo's fascination with Caribbean masquerade. The poems are astir with voices and bodies usually kept 'betweenthe lines' of poetry: a weeping poltergeist disrupting the decorum of a lyric; polyglot workmen along an ivory-towercity road. Novels are turned inside out to become dramas of sleaze and surveillance.

Vahni Capildeo is a Trinidadian Scottish writer inspired by other voices, ranging from live Caribbean connexions and an Indian diaspora background to the landscapes where Capildeo travels and lives. Their poetry (seven books and four pamphlets) includes Measures of Expatriation, awarded the Forward Prize for Best Collection in 2016. Following a DPhil in Old Norse literature, Capildeo has worked in academia; in culture for development, with Commonwealth Writers; and as an Oxford English Dictionary lexicographer. Capildeo held the Judith E. Wilson Poetry Fellowship and Harper-Wood Studentship at Cambridge, and more recently a Douglas Caster Cultural Fellowship at the University of Leeds.

Paige Smeaton is from Aberystwyth, Wales. She is an editor of the Cambridge Literary Review, and has curated a number of Performance art events, including work on the Polyphonic PoetryFestival and Out of Bounds Poetry Project. Her work has appeared in Blackbox Manifold, The Gull, Cambridge Literary Review, and the Chicago Review.

The event will begin at 19:00 and include readings from both Vahni and students on the MA poetry programme at UEA. Tickets are free but please reserve them here. There isalso a Facebook event. For any enquiries about the event please email

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