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Liesl Jobson

@ Sunday Times Books LIVE

RIP Oscar Paulo, Touch of Madness & Off the Wall

Oscar PauloLast night I attended the Cape Town launch of Antjie Krog’s latest book, Begging to be Black. The first person to greet me as I walked up the stairs was Hugh Hodge, who edits New Contrast, and who runs with Karin Schimke, “Off the Wall”, the weekly poetry gig in that has met over the years at Touch of Madness in Nuttall Street, Observatory.

He greeted me with the horrible news that Oscar Paulo, the waitron originally from Angola, who always greeted everybody with the warm appellation: Daaaaaaarling! had been stabbed last Thursday while talking in a phone booth.

Oscar seemed always to have first dibs on the poetry gathering, setting up the room, bringing drinks in during the reading, clearing up afterwards. He’d always remember me, even though I attended only occasionally when I lived in Joburg. Oscar had a welcoming presence that genuinely embraced the poets and poetry lovers he served.

Off the Wall, the weekly poetry forum that has hosted poets from near and far, was started by Ronnie Levitan, a gifted architect and photographer, who was murdered in 2005.

There will be a memorial gathering for Oscar at Touch of Madness on Saturday at 2.00 pm.
Leave a message of condolence on the Touch of Madness facebook wall


Recent comments:

  • <a href="" rel="nofollow">Megan</a>
    November 11th, 2009 @17:19 #

    So very sad and shocking. Oscar gave me so many hugs when ever I went to Touch of Madness, always such a warm and generous man. A terrible and tragic loss. RIP Oscar.

  • <a href="" rel="nofollow">Helen</a>
    November 11th, 2009 @19:07 #

    Absolutely awful and sick-making.

  • <a href="" rel="nofollow">Colleen</a>
    November 12th, 2009 @08:15 #

    Really awful news. Am so sorry.


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