PoetryEast | Art, Ideas, Culture


PoetryEast is an ongoing series of cultural events at the London Buddhist Centre and online, hosted by Maitreyabandhu, exploring the meaning and value of the arts.

Upcoming Events


PoetryEast with Monique Roffey

Saturday, 19th Feb, 7.30pm (in-person and live on YouTube)

Monique Roffey is an award-winning Trinidadian-born British writer of novels, essays, literary journalism and a memoir. Her most recent novel, The Mermaid of Black Conch, (Peepal Tree Press, 2020) won the Costa Book of the Year Award, and was nominated for eight major awards. She is a Senior Lecturer at Manchester Metropolitan University and a tutor for the National Writers Centre.


PoetryEast with Tracy K. Smith

Saturday 5th March, 7pm (YouTube Premier)

The American poet and educator Tracy K. Smith has published four collections of poetry. Her 2011 collection Life on Mars won the Pulitzer Prize. Tracy served as the Poet Laureate of the United States from 2017 to 2019. Her memoir, Ordinary Light, was published in 2015. She was elected a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets in 2021, the same year that Such Color: New and Selected Poems was published.


PoetryEast with Claudine Toutoungi and Jane Draycott

Saturday, 2nd April, 7.30pm (in-person and live on YouTube)

Claudine Toutoungi is a playwright and poet. He second poetry collection Two Tongues (Carcanet) won the Ledbury Munthe Poetry Prize. Claudine’s play Slipping was a Best Play Finalist in the 2015 Audio Drama Awards. Jane Draycott’s Carcanet collections include The Occupant (PBS Recommendation), Over (TS Eliot Prize shortlist), Prince Rupert’s Drop (Forward Prize shortlist) and a translation of the medieval dream-elegy Pearl. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature.


PoetryEast with Colm Tóibín

Date TBD , YouTube Premier

Colm Tóibín – Irish novelist, poet and critic – is the author of nine novels, including The South (winner of the Whitbread First Novel Award) Brooklyn (adapted for an Oscar-nominated film), The Testament of Mary (nominated for a Tony Award for Best Play), Nora Webster, and most recently The Magician. His work has been shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize three times, won the Costa Novel Award and the Impac Award. He won the prestigious David Cohen Prize for Literature in 2021. He has also published two short story collections and many works of non-fiction. Vinegar Hill, his first collection of poems (Carcanet), is published in March 2022.


PoetryEast with Sir Christopher Le Brun PPRA

Saturday, 28th May, 7.30pm (in-person and live on YouTube)

Christopher Le Brun has been a celebrated British painter, printmaker and sculptor since the early 1980s; he was also an instrumental public figure in his role as President of the Royal Academy of Arts from 2011 to 2019. Le Brun has received many honours: he is a former trustee of Britain's National Gallery of Art and the Tate Gallery. For the Royal Mint of Great Britain, he designed a new 50-Pence piece. His sculpture Union (Horse with Two Discs) stands at the entrance of the Museum of London. He was awarded a Knighthood for services to the Arts in the 2021 New Year Honours.