“I’ve always thought of the muses as this gang of lesbian avengers.” When Gregory Woods said this at the beginning of his reading, a roar of laughter rumbled through the audience.
Poet and literary critic Professor Woods talked about the importance of the beauty and enjoyment of creation while writing. He celebrated the frivolity of writing something that amuses you. The ironic wit with which he approaches writing and the charming personality that shines through his work entertained all of us who attended his reading of selected poems at De Montfort University’s Cultural Exchanges Week
I appreciated his words about the craft of writing and the ideas and inspirations behind certain poems. I also took reassurance from the way he looks at feedback: with respect but a fair amount of distance. For me as a first-year creative writing student these aspects of his reading were very helpful. .
As an influential voice in LGBT literature, Woods’ poems mainly revolve around the theme of homosexuality and gay relationships. However, listening to him deliver them in an informal way that reached out to the instinctive, human side of the audience members, I realised that his words touch everyone.