5 questions with: Peter Olds

Dunedin poet Peter Olds. Photo: Gregor Richardson
Dunedin poet Peter Olds. Photo: Gregor Richardson
Dunedin poet Peter Olds will be taking part in a group book launch this week,as part of the Dunedin Writers & Readers Festival. 

Olds' new poetry collection Taking my jacket for a walk will be launched along with new publications by Paddy Richardson, VictorBillot, Huberta Hellendoorn and John Gibb.

The free event is on Wednesday at 5pm, in the Athenaeum Library, Octagon.

What was the best birthday present you ever received, and why?

A bike, for adventure. I was about 12 years old, living in Milton,  and would go with my olderbrother or my friends to Waihola or Toko Mouth to fish.

What smell do you find irresistible?

Hot chocolate. It reminds me of very frosty mornings and being greeted with a cup of hotcocoa before heading off to school.

What is your least favourite thing about humanity?

Greed and pollution. People not thinking properly about the effects of their actions on other people, but just satisfying their own needs. Pollution goes with it, in its many forms, including the environment and ideas.

What is one strong childhood memory?

Sitting in school, bored. Many of the kids I went to school with also felt like that.

What is your message?

Look after one another. Jesus said, love one another. Buddha said, be kind. I knew James K. Baxter.

He had a little list of ''dos'' - cast-iron rules for a crash-pad or commune - thatincluded things like visit those in prisons and mental asylums. It was about looking after others.

He was a great guy. He lived by example.

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