2021: Event 21

(21) Poetry Friends:
Pascale Petit and
Patience Agbabi

Hosted by Katherine Stansfield

Sunday 18th April | 4-4:45pm | Free

Pascale Petit has published eight collections of poems. Tiger Girl (Bloodaxe) 2020 was shortlisted for the Forward Prize for Best Collection and is a richly imagined and intensely felt look at her connection with the mysterious grandmother who helped to raise her, and at the wildlife of Central India. She is joined by Patience Agbabi, a renowned British poet and performer, author of four collections including the wonderful Telling Tales, a re-telling of the stories of Chaucer. Patience often uses traditional poetic form and has recently written two novels for young people, The Infinite  and a sequel, The Time Thief.   Both Petit and Agbabi spent time in Wales growing up, Pascale in mid and south Wales, and Patience in Colwyn Bay. They will read their poems and take part in a Q&A  hosted by Cardiff-based poet/novelist Katherine Stansfield. 

Sign Language interpretation provided

If you’ve already registered under another event there is no need to sign up again. One link will allow you access to any free event across the weekend so that you can drop in and out of the ones you’re most interested in.

The Festival is organising the bookselling in partnership with bookshop.org. There’s an expanded range of Festival titles for each event available from our bookshop.org affiliate shop. Take a look at them here. If you buy from our shop, you are supporting the Festival, the writers, the publishers, and, thanks to the way bookshop.org operates, independent booksellers generally.

Pascale Petit smiling at the camera, trees in the background.

Pascale Petit

Pascale Petit’s eighth collection, Tiger Girl, published by Bloodaxe in 2020, was shortlisted for the 2020  Forward Prize for Best Collection. A poem from the book, ‘Indian Paradise Flycatcher‘, won the Keats-Shelley Poetry Prize. Her seventh collection Mama Amazonica, published in 2017, won the inaugural Laurel Prize 2020, and the Royal Society of Literature’s Ondaatje Prize 2018 – the first time a poetry book won this prize for a work of fiction, non-fiction or poetry best evoking the spirit of a place. Four of Pascale’s earlier collections (Seren) were shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot Prize. 

‘I think this might be her best book so far because of this complexity of a family in crisis against a planet in crisis – she’s very much a poet of the environment… She has a powerful, imagistic authority over the landscape. It’s a very moving, powerful book.’ – Daljit Nagra, reviewing Tiger Girl on BBC Radio 4’s Front Row 
Image: Brian Fraser 

Pascale PetitTiger Girl
£10.99
Bloodaxe
ISBN: 9781780375267

Pascale PetitMama Amazonica
£9.95
Bloodaxe
ISBN: 9781780372945

Pascale PetitFauverie
£9.99
Seren
ISBN: 9781781721681

Pascale PetitThe Huntress
£7.99
Seren
ISBN: 9781854113962

Pascale PetitThe Zoo Father
£9.99
Seren
ISBN: 9781854113054

Patience Agbabi

One of the UK’s foremost writers, Patience Agbabi has spent over 20 years celebrating the written and spoken word. Her work has appeared in anthologies, on TV and radio, The London Underground and human skin.  In 2004 she was nominated one of the UK’s ‘Next Generation Poets’. She studied English Language and Literature at Oxford University, and is a former Poet Laureate of Canterbury (2009 to 2010). The author of five books, her latest book is the novel (for middle graders) The Infinite (Canongate, 2020) and the first in the Leap Cycle series which charts the adventures of Elle, a 12 year-old girl born with the gift of travelling through time.  The book covers themes of neurodiversity, ecology and difference and Bernardine Evaristo and Philip Pullman are already fans. The sequel, The Time-Thief, is fresh off the press in May 2021.  Her fourth poetry book, Telling Tales (Canongate, 2014)is a vivid retelling for the 21st century of Chaucer‘s The Canterbury Tales and was shortlisted for the Ted Hughes Prize for New Work in Poetry 2014 and was a Wales Book of the Year (2015). Following a launch at Southwark Cathedral, Patience toured the book with producers Renaissance One to literary festivals and venues across the UK.  

Patience is inspired by the full spectrum of the arts. Her high-profile multimedia projects include Metamorphosis: Titian 2012  at the National Gallery. This led to delivering public workshops in the gallery and a PSHE Creative Intervention with Year 8 pupils on the painting  Diana and Callisto.  She has participated in residencies from Eton College to Flamin’ Eight, a tattoo studio; from The Historic Dockyard at Chatham to the stately home Harewood House. There she wrote her poem ‘The Doll’s House’, shortlisted for the Forward Prize for Best Single Poem 2014. She became a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 2017. 

Patience AgbabiTelling Tales
£9.99
Canongate
ISBN: 9781782111573

Patience AgbabiThe Time-Thief
£6.99
Canongate
ISBN: 9781786899903 

Patience AgbabiThe Infinite
£6.99
Canongate
ISBN: 9781786899651 

Katherine Stansfield

Katherine Stansfield grew up in Cornwall and now lives in Cardiff. Her poems have appeared in  The North,  Magma,  Poetry Wales,  The Interpreter’s House,  And Other Poems,  Butcher’s Dog, and as ‘Poem of the Week’ in The Guardian. Her second collection  We Could Be Anywhere By Now  is available now; the book was supported by a bursary from Literature Wales. She teaches for the Open University and was a Royal Literary Fund Fellow. She also writes novels. Katherine was also Poet in Residence at the original Cardiff Poetry Festival venue: Cornerstones in Cardiff, and produced a pamphlet, All That Was Wood, in 2019. 

Katherine StansfieldWe Could Be Anywhere By Now
£9.99
Seren
ISBN: 9781781725672

Katherine StansfieldAll That Was Wood
£5
Seren
ISBN: 9781781725535

Katherine StansfieldPlaying House
£9.99
Seren
ISBN: 9781781721933

Cathryn McShane-Kouyaté

Cathryn McShane-Kouyaté is a British Sign Language/ Welsh/English interpreter with 15 years experience of working in a wide range of settings including theatre, education, and community work.  In the last year Cathryn has become a familiar face from her interpreting work for the Welsh Government and the regular COVID-19 ministerial press briefings broadcast live across news channels in Wales.