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Tag Archives: poetry

Reah pours soul into debut poetry volume

Caher woman supporting Clare Haven Services with proceeds from book of poems POEMS can pop into Reah Higgins’ head at any time of the day. The Caher woman has been finding her creative voice over the course of the last year-and-a-half, when lockdowns kept many people at home with a little extra time on their hands. “I don’t sit down to write,” she said. “The poems just keep coming. It could be something that comes into my head while I’m reading or watching TV, or a poem could be sparked by something someone says. “It’s been a childhood dream to write and lockdown started something by giving me more time for creativity.” Last year, the Wexford native launched her first CD collection of poetry to give something back to the Irish Kidney Association (AKA). In 2017, the organisation was a lifeline when Reah donated a kidney to her husband Aaron. Now, the professional social care leader has turned her literary …

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Ennis school turns to poetry to process effects of pandemic

STUDENTS in Ennis are making their voices heard about the effect Covid-19 has had on their lives as part of a poetry initiative. Coláiste Muire recently awarded prizes to staff and students who had taken part in a poetry competition around the theme of Covid-19 organised by the school’s guidance counsellor Fiona Christie. She explained the endeavour was organised as part of her role in supporting the well being of students at the school. The prize giving event was held virtually as celebrations took place across the country for Poetry Day Ireland. “This cross curricular guidance counselling/wellbeing/English initiative was run across the whole school and the response was just overwhelming from both students and staff,” she said. “The aim of this was to capture the student voice around Covid, the student voice is very important. “By inviting students to pen a poem, I hoped they would share their experiences with us so that their voices could be heard. And it …

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Mountshannon Arts turns to poetry as it steers a route through restrictions of the pandemic

NEW Directions, Maps and Journeys are the themes of Poetry Day and the inspiration behind a project being undertaken by Mountshannon Arts, as the community organisation reflects on its 25-year history. Poetry Day takes place on Thursday, April 29. Poet Róisín Bugler notes that it will also mark the first outing this year for Moutshannon Arts, whose festival has been inspiring and entertaining audiences from East Clare and far further afield, for a quarter of a century. “We are still curtailed by Covid-19,” Róisín said, “but Poetry Day will be our first opportunity to showcase Mountshannon Arts this year on the 25th anniversary of the festival. “We’ve been doing something a little different for Poetry Day and this year people have been responding to the popular and beautiful local art trail.” This ‘ekphrastic’ poetry project – where one art work is inspired by another – has been embraced enthusiastically, with inspiring results. “Ordinarily, I would put out a general call …

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‘We need more dissenting voices,’ says emerging Ennis poet

AT 74-years of age Ennis man Martin Knox admits he left it rather late to start publishing poetry, but the trained chemist is certainly making up for lost time. After a fruitful working life, which took in stints at Syntex, later Roche; as well as teaching at some of the country’s most prestigious educational institutions, Martin made the leap into poetry and has just published his first book. Entitled, Words Without Song: Vignettes of Reflective Dissent and Childhood Reflections, the volume is a collection of over 100 poems which “go against the establishment” and give voice to Martin’s long-standing belief that the purpose of literature is to highlight uncomfortable truths. “Racism, poverty, mental health, corruption, environmental damage, the unequal distribution of wealth, suffering, those are some the main themes of my poems,” he said. “Writers should ask serious questions. For a long time, I didn’t have the time to write. When I retired, I found that time. So many questionable …

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Doireann clasps literature prize

A CLARE writer has won the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature. Bilingual poet Doireann Ní Ghríofa won the €10,000 prize, which is awarded for a body of work by a young Irish writer that shows exceptional promise. The award follows the recent publication of her collection of poetry, Clasp. Announcing the winner, Ireland chair of poetry and selection committee member Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin said, “Doireann NI Ghríofa is a poet to watch, with a fresh view of the world: apparently ordinary houses, shops, common objects and activities. The sureness of her touch and the skill with which she handles language and shapes her poems are almost invisible but it is through them that she achieves the feat of making us look again at the usual and illuminates its pulsating strangeness. “She is a brilliant addition to the distinguished succession of bilingual poets writing in Irish and English.” Doireann said that contrary to some descriptions in the media, she is a …

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Maureen Cronin visits the 'Champion on Thursday mornings.

Ireland’s oldest newspaper contributor on ‘The Local Eye’

Kerry native, Maureen Cronin, is rapidly approaching her 100th birthday but she comes into the ‘Champion offices without fail every Thursday. She comes in to drop in her unique poetry and to have the chat. Hear Maureen tell her story on ‘The Local Eye’ on RTÉ 1 this Thursday evening at 7.30pm.

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Karen’s poetry wows judges

BALLYVAUGHAN-based writer Karen McDonnell has won the 2014 WOW award for poetry.  The prize is awarded annually by Wordsonthewaves, which publishes an anthology of fiction and poetry by shortlisted and winning writers. Two of McDonnell’s poems were long listed with one, Upstream, the Bliss of Heaven making the final shortlist. Part of a historical song-cycle, the poem’s subjects are Margaret Roper and her father Thomas More, who was condemned to death in the reign of Henry VIII. Commenting on his choice for the WOW! Poetry Prize, judge Knute Skinner wrote: “Is there a word out of place? I don’t think so.” McDonnell’s travel writing, fiction, non-fiction and poetry have been published in The Irish Times, Crannóg, The Clare Champion, by the Clare Poets, and in Los Angeles by the litzine poeticdiversity which will publish a second extract from Unsettled, a West Bank Journal in its Spring, 2014 issue. McDonnell is currently working on her first poetry collection, People this Little World. …

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