Palestinian poet Rafeef Ziadah on UK tour with Poetry Parnassus and Birmingham Poet Laureate Jan Watts

Palestinian poet Rafeef Ziadah and Jan Watts, Birmingham Poet Laureate

By Iqbal Tamimi

On Wed 4 July, 7pm Birmingham Library Theatre will be hosting a special event with internationally renowned Palestinian poet Rafeef Ziadah and Jan Watts, Birmingham Poet Laureate 2011/2012. This event is part of the national Poetry Parnassus Tour, which celebrates the 2012 Olympics. Poets from each of the 204 nations competing in this year’s Olympics will be either be at London’s Southbank Centre or at one of the key national events.

{jcomments on}

Jan saw Rafeef, a third-generation Palestinian refugee, at a recent performance and was totally blown away by her and is delighted to be sharing a stage with Rafeef. The event is open to all, so do come along to hear poetry and personal stories from two very talented poets.

Rafeef Ziadah started performing poetry in Toronto in 2004 with the spoken word collective Pueblo Unido and received an Ontario Arts Council Grant from the ‘Word of Mouth’ program to create her debut album Hadeel and  she is the winner of the 2007 Mayworks Festival Poetry Face-Off.

Rafeef’s poetry speaks to the struggle of immigrants and the politics of exile. Being Palestinian she reflects on the realities of her homeland today, to which is not allowed to return.

Rafeef’s debut ablum Hadeel is dedicated to Palestinian youth, who still fly kites in the face of F16 bombers, who still remember the names of their villages in Palestine and still hear the sound of Hadeel over Gaza.

Jan Watts commented: “Rafeef is an intense and exquisite performer who speaks her uncompromising words with truth and integrity. I was rocked to my foundations when I saw her perform earlier this year and we are so very grateful to have another opportunity to welcome her back to Birmingham. I feel humble to share the stage with her”.

This is a free event, so please do spread the word (seats to be booked via:

nikki.bi@birmingham.gov.uk / 0121 303 2895)

Share this post Share on FacebookShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInEmail this to someone

Related posts

Bristol NHS Celebrates Creativity and Wellbeing by Arts Festival at Southmead Hospital

Bristol NHS Celebrates Creativity and Wellbeing by Arts Festival at Southmead Hospital

A three-day Fresh Arts Festival is being held on 16-18 October in the Brunel building at Southmead Hospital Bristol , to celebrate the role that the arts playing in bringing the building to life and connecting to the communities who use it. Events will include a writer in residence, staff...

A Poem for the Mothers of Gaza

A Poem for the Mothers of Gaza

Give me time By Palestinian poet Iqbal Tamimi Give me time By Palestinian poet Iqbal Tamimi Gaza gave birth Her pavements smiled with red roses. Her children were shepherds of the morning dew She became pregnant with hope But the conspiracy targeted her womb Now her mothers are...

The First Person

The First Person

  Iqbal Tamimi returns to the Spotlight with a poem she wrote after meeting Mariane Pearl, the author of A Mighty Heart who lost her husband, journalist and reporter Daniel Pearl when he was kidnapped and murdered by terrorists in Pakistan. The First Person for Mariane Pearl by...

Leave a comment