So who will sing mothers song this song
is ancient as the land itself.
Maureen O’Keefe, Walpiri poet
When it comes to gaining an understanding of the eclectic culture of poetry and poets in the Northern Territory, The Northern Territory Writers’ Centre (NTWC) is the place to begin. The centre supports the writing culture of both Darwin and Alice Springs, in creative and innovative ways, whilst also initiating projects across the rest of the Northern Territory. They run a festival each year to promote, stimulate and showcase established and upcoming writers, bringing together some of the best in the local and national literary scene: alternating between the Eye of the Storm Festival in Alice Springs and WordStorm in Darwin. Visiting writers and locals alike enjoy an intense long weekend of consciousness shifting conversation and extraordinary creativity.
Writers groups connected with the Northern Territory Writers’ Centre are:
- The Darwin Authors Group, who meet on the 2nd Thursday of the month at the Conference Room, Frog Hollow Centre for the Arts from 6pm
- The Palmerston’s Own Writers, whose meetings are held on the first Wednesday of the month at the Palmerston City Library Community Room
- KROW – Katherine Region of Writers, whose meetings are held at the Katherine Public Library Tea Room, every second Saturday of the month
- Diwurruwurru (Message Stick) – formally known as The Borroloola Poetry Group, who meet every Friday in the library of Borroloola School. Diwurruwurru is a lively, glorious and dynamic place where poetry is created; new publication opportunities are explored; and Indigenous Culture and Story from the Gulf is celebrated and generously shared
- CAW – Central Australian Writers, which is open to writers across all genres, and they hold regular meetings for writers spanning different levels of expertise
Visit The Northern Territory Writers’ Centre for more information on how to get involved with any of these writing groups.
The NTWC has also runs residencies for esteemed writers to broaden their work and deepen their practise. Beginning in 2014 in conjunction with the George Brown Darwin Botanic Gardens, The Residency is available to NTWC Members only. The chosen writer is sponsored by the Writers’ Centre, and is involved in a reciprocal exchange for the support, including giving workshops and public readings.
Darwin is also host to the The Darwin Poetry Cup, which requires each registered poet to perform original material in 60 seconds. The Darwin Poetry Cup celebrated their 20th birthday in 2014.
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