This year’s Calabash audience had the rare opportunity of hearing from the immensely talented Jamaica Kincaid – first in an amusing reading from her latest book, and then in a insightful and engaging conversation with Kwame Dawes. The interchange included Kincaid’s description of the impact the Concise Oxford Dictionary had on her, as the only thing she had to read – punishment handed down to her seven-year-old self to copy out pages of “Paradise Lost” – passing comment on letters to the Corinthians from “the constipated Paul” – and her request for a picture of the Calabash audience, which she said included the most black people she had ever seen at a reading, proving that black people do read (and write!)
I was also honoured to have been asked to participate in the celebration of this year’s featured book at Calabash 2014 “Heartland” by Wilson Harris, as one of four readers of selected excerpts. It was the fiftieth anniversary of the publication of the book. Thanks to the Calabash crew for a wonderful opportunity!