Poet laureate pays tribute to Miss Lou at Independence event in New York

Poet laureate pays tribute to Miss Lou at Independence event in New York


Sunday, August 17, 2014

Professor Mervyn Morris making his presentation in Washington, DC, recently.

Jamaica’s Poet Laureate Professor Mervyn Morris gave a special presentation on late cultural icon Louise Bennett Coverely, at an Independence celebration held on Monday, August 4 at the Jamaican Embassy in Washington, DC.

More than 100 members of the diaspora and friends of Jamaica attended the event held in collaboration with the University of the West Indies (UWI) Alumni Association of Washington, DC.

Professor Morris, referring to aspects of his latest book: Miss Lou: Louise Bennett and Jamaican Culture, presented an outstanding assessment of Miss Lou’s contribution to Jamaica’s literary tradition.

Among other things, the poet laureate noted Miss Lou’s use of the Jamaican language, her skilful interweaving of Jamaican life into her poetry, the presentation of her views through “Aunty Roachy”, her contribution to the development of the Jamaican pantomime, and her talent promotion through Ring Ding and other initiatives.

After a lively question-and-answer session, the audience received an additional treat when Professor Morris read some of his own poetry. Among the poems presented to the appreciative audience were: The Pond, The Day My Father Died, and works from I Been There, Sort Of, and Case History, Jamaica.

Jamaica’s ambassador to the United States Professor Stephen Vasciannie gave the welcome, while Malene Alleyne offered remarks on behalf of the UWI Alumni Association.