Archive for Lara Bozabalian

March 23: Poets speaking truth to error

Posted in Art Bar Poetry with tags , , on March 23, 2010 by theartbar

It was a night of pedagogy in many ways, in no small way because all the poets are all employed in some way as teachers – in high school, university and nonfiction works now considered standard texts.

Teaching is more than just telling facts, however.

As Tom Wayman says, regarding his post-secondary students, “In teaching I try to get them to say their own truth.”

Stephen Humphrey

Lara Bozabalian

Lara Bozabalian was a long-time almost-weekly regular at the Art Bar open stage, long before publishing her verse collection The Cartographer’s Skin and featuring at events such as Luminato and the Words Aloud Festival as well as our humble series. She has also represented Toronto across the border as part of the city’s slam team, winning victories with the power of her words, not in-your-face pyrotechnics.

We were pleased to have Lara grace our mainstage to share poems full of keen observation and compassion.


David Day

Widely-published poet and non-fiction author David Day has many things to teach, such as how a poem is like a dead cat, why only mean people get to live in castles and what Ezra Pound has in common with loggers.


Tom Wayman

Tom Wayman comes from a tradition where poetry is a tool for social justice, which comes through in his work. Wayman is not strident, however, but sympathetic and paitent, like a teacher in love with teaching but not with giving out marks.



February 9: A night in red satin… and black velvet

Posted in Art Bar Poetry with tags , , , , , , , on February 9, 2010 by theartbar

Candles, chocolate, light jazz, wine, loads of ambiance… and a crooner in black velvet.

The Art Bar Love Lounge featured six of Toronto’s best romantic poets sharing their work.

(Photo by Pete de Lepper)

Priscila Uppal started off the night. Among her five collections of poetry are Live Coverage and Ontological Necessities, from Exile Editions. This year she will be releasing Successful Tragedies: Selected Poems (Bloodaxe Books) and Traumatology (Exile Editions). She is the Canadian Athletes poet-in-residence for the 2010 Vancouver Olympic Games, and shared some of her sports themed poetry.

(Photo by Pete de Lepper)

Priscila was surprised at the musical intro by crooner Romeo Satin – I think she actually blushed.

(Photo by Stephen Humphrey)

Sandra Kasturi’s poetry collection The Animal Bridegroom has an introduction by Neil Gaiman, so she pretty much wins at life. She is currently working on another poetry collection Come Late to the Love of Birds, and two novels – one about a lady detective, and one a steampunk epic. Her poetry dazzled the room!

(Photo by Pete de Lepper)

Norm Cristofoli runs and Labour of Love. Due to his online bios being pretty ambiguous, Romeo Satin began his intro with a quick boogie, then rewrote the lyrics to Copacabana to feature Norm’s awesomeness. Norm’s piece “My Heart Goes Boom” was a highlight of the evening, with the entire crowd chanting along.

(Photo by Pete de Lepper)

David Silverberg is the Managing Editor of and the Artistic Director and Founder of Toronto Poetry Slam.

(Photo by Pete de Lepper)

Romeo Satin and the “Rome-ettes” broke out the theme from Shaft for him. His love poem to “Eggnog” was incredibly dramatic and heartfelt.

(Photo by Pete de Lepper)

Lara Bozabalian is the author of four chapbooks, and her first full length collection The Cartographer’s Skin will be published by Piquant Press this month. She is the head of English at a public high school by day, and a member of the Toronto Poetry Slam Team by night. Her quietly intense poems were dreamy and riveting.

(Photo by Pete de Lepper)

Amanda Hiebert is an actor, writer, and slam poet. She likes roller coasters, peanut brittle, her grandfather’s laugh, old hats, and kissing cute boys. These are her muses. Luckily for those in the Art Bar Love Lounge, she also likes sharing her soul. Amanda read a series of poems showing how her relationships and heart have evolved over the years.

Thanks to everyone who came out, to the amazing open mic readers, and to Romeo Satin (aka Pelayo Matute) for the brilliantly stylish and hilarious musical introductions.

~ Cynthia