Sept 9, 2013
For many Torontonians, the name Dwayne Morgan is synonymous with poetry — one cannot be fathomed without the other. Like his favourite poet Mutabaruka, Dwayne is not only defined by his poignant poetry but also by his impassioned motivational public speaking.
For 20 years poet Dwayne Morgan has been entertaining and inspiring audiences with his powerful prose. However, he is not just a spoken-word entertainer; he is also a passionate public speaker.
Earlier this year Dwayne was honoured with a star on the Scarborough Walk of Fame for all his community work and efforts which have influenced the poet he is today.
“It was a great feeling,” Dwayne said. “It wasn’t an award given by my cultural community; it was mainstream recognition of all that I have given over the past two decades.”
Throughout his career Dwayne has tirelessly given back to the community through workshops and speaking engagements, but he has also created a long list of annual poetry and spoken-word events such as When Sisters Speak, When Brothers Speak and The Toronto International Poetry Slam, to name a few. His poetry events have created a platform for future generations of poets, otherwise unable to have their voices heard, as well as having helped to put Toronto on the map as a city with artistic depth and soul.
“I am motivated by the opportunity that I have to shape the world that I live in simply by inspiring and motivating those around me,” said the popular poet. “I am constantly meeting people who credit me with sparking something in them, and that’s greater than any amount of money that someone could give me.”
It is this unwavering dedication to giving back that has cemented Dwayne’s place as a trustworthy advocate and speaker. Dwayne writes a popular advice column in 24 Hours, hosts CKLN’s multicultural radio program Diasporic Music and writes for Pride News magazine, a well respected paper in the Caribbean community.
“I think my greatest achievement is that I am still here, doing what I love, twenty years after I started,” Dwayne said. “Especially doing something that no one believed there was a future in.”
While a career in poetry and public speaking may not be for everybody, Dwayne points out that passion is key to anyone’s success.
“I think it is important to find a positive outlet to express oneself. For me, that’s poetry, for someone else, it could be sports.”
The charismatic poet has big plans for the next twenty years.
“I would love to find new ways to inspire people to follow their passion,” he said. “I will continue to write and produce, with the hope of re-establishing much of the international work that I set aside when my daughter was born.”
- Go to one of Dwayne’s upcoming spoken-word events: the 15th Annual When Brothers Speak Spoken Word Concert on November 16th
- Find a new outlet for your artistic expression
- Read a local cultural magazine to learn more about the different cultures in the city