The Pharos Arts Foundation presents the Cyprus launch of Anton Floyd’s Depositions – a book of poems themed on the worldwide refugee crisis and population displacement. The event will feature a reading by the poet with a reception to follow. Copies of the book will be available for sale (all proceeds go to the UNHCR.)
Anton Floyd was born in Cairo. He was raised in Cyprus and educated in Ireland. Much of his emotional heft of the Depositions collection derives from his long family association with Cyprus from 1955 to 1970. At Christmas 1963, his family was forcibly removed at gunpoint from the family home in northern Nicosia. Floyd returned to Cyprus with his wife in 1980, when the evidences and traumas of the 1974 invasion were still very fresh, to teach in schools in Nicosia, Limassol and Paphos. They now live in Ireland, in idyllic West Cork. Selections from the central section of Depositions (Doire Press – ISBN: 978-907682-93-3) have been translated into 20 languages including, Greek, Armenian, and Turkish. With permission from the Cyprus Post Authority, the image on the cover of the book features a treatment of the refugee girl woodcut by Tassos used on the Cyprus refugee stamp.
“The recording of a deposition is an attempt to get to the truth of the matter. In this book of poems, Depositions, Anton Floyd presents the stories of those who have suffered the trauma of flight and exile and, using the poet’s twin skills of memory and imagination, he presents a sequence of urgent testimonies from people living on the move and existing on the fringe of society. This work is by its nature fragmentary, reflecting the broken lives of those we know as refugees, but these fragments, compiled in this collection, taken together create a mosaic which tells a fuller story, one that gives voice to the voiceless and extends its reach beyond geographical and temporal borders.
Every day, online and in print, we are confronted by the stories of those who have been forced to leave their homes because of war, famine or persecution of one kind or another. In our world of instant mass communication, we are in danger of becoming inured to the individual human stories behind the headlines. Anton Floyd, in this collection, has chosen to tell these difficult stories, using his own personal experience of displacement and relocation. Furthermore, he has built on that knowledge by engaging with others who have suffered the trauma of forced exile by listening to their stories. Floyd is a teacher and a poet, and he understands the unique power of language to bring to visceral life the experience of others.” © Excerpt from a speech given by prizewinning poet Brian Kirk at the launch of Depositions on World Refugee Day, on 20 June 2022, at the National Bahá’í Centre, Dublin and published in Live Encounters Book Reviews July /August 2022.
When Thursday, October 20 at .30 pm
Venue The Shoe Factory, Nicosia