Subscribe Search

Search form

Poetry in motion in Siem Reap and Chiang Mai

Poetry in motion in Siem Reap and Chiang Mai


Culture vultures get ready – artist and Hotel 1961 owner Loven Ramos is organising his latest artistic venture, the inaugural Northern Kingdoms Poetry Journeys.

This is a “two-city, seven-day adventure of culture, workshops, readings and tributes to the written and spoken words,” taking place in Siem Reap and Chiang Mai from November 2-9.

The festival will kick off in Siem Reap on November 2 with a poetry and meditation workshop with Joel Altman at Hariharalaya Retreat near the Roulos temples.

“It is going to be about meditation and tuning into your creative energy,” explains Altman. “We’re going to start with lunch. We’ll share a beautiful meal together with local, fresh, colourful food. And then we’ll sit down and do a two hour workshop, with some really basic movement and breath just to get us grounded.

“Then we’ll talk a little bit about creativity, expression and life and give people time to go out first without pen and paper and just explore the natural world and the present moment, and then,  with pen and paper, see what can come out of that presence.”

He adds, “I may also tie in some mixed media, because often we’re trying to write poetry and we’re stuck in the words. But sometimes playing some music, singing or moving the body helps to unblock the energy.”

The following two days in Siem Reap includes Poets in Tuk Tuks, a creative visualisation workshop by Marcel Milliam, an experimental sound workshop by Jan Cornall, and poetry readings at Angkor Wat,  led by Marjorie Evasco.

There will be visits to Ta Prohm, the Bayon and Baphuon,  and a breakfast picnic and screening at Wat Enkosei of a documentary on the ancient Khmer lyrical poetry style, smot.

Hotel 1961 will host a night of poetry and music on November 3, and on November 4 a new exhibition by local artists Oun Savann and Darshana Bolt will open.

The festival then moves to Chiang Mai, starting on November 8 with Poets on Tuk-Tuks, and travelling poetry sessions and paste ups around the Old City.

The schedule also includes Water and Poetry on the Ping River, readings at the Writer’s Club & Wine Bar, and poetry readings in the Royal Flora Park.

All workshops and readings are free.


  • Kak Channthy, Cambodian Space Project frontwoman, killed in crash at 38 [Updated]

    Updated 5:05pm, Tuesday, March 20, 2018 Kak Channthy, frontwoman of popular The Cambodian Space Project, was killed Tuesday morning in a traffic accident in Phnom Penh. She was 38. Channthy, the internationally recognised singer-songwriter also known as “Srey Thy”, was reportedly travelling in a tuk-tuk on the city's

  • Australians protest Asean summit visit by PM Hun Sen

    Hundreds of protesters gathered in Sydney’s Hyde Park on Friday to protest against Cambodian strongman Hun Sen, who claimed to have been gifted millions of dollars by the Australian government ahead of a special Asean summit this weekend. An estimated 300 protesters, the majority of

  • One Australian, one Cambodian killed in explosion at military base

    Updated: 5:20pm, Friday 16 March 2018 An Australian tourist and a Cambodian soldier were killed in an explosion on Thursday afternoon at an army base in Cambodia’s Kampong Speu province. The Australian, whom the government initially identified as a technical demining expert in his 40s, and

  • Peeling back layers of prehistory in Battambang

    When the man passed away, he had not yet reached 50. He belonged to a tribe that had settled near the Sangker River in Battambang province, likely cultivating the fields and raising animals. On the side, they hunted for boars, and even turtles, one of which