In the beginning …

I promised with the return of the light and the fresh growth of Spring I too would create afresh.  As a teenager I ran across a poem by Gerard Manley Hopkins on the subject of Spring.  Some lines have resonated with me as fresh as morning bird song ever since,

“Nothing is so beautiful  as Spring –

When weeds, in wheels, shoot long and lovely and lush;

Thrush’s eggs look little low heavens, and thrush

Through the echoing timber does so rinse and wring

The ear, it strikes like lightnings to hear him sing; ”

So, inspired anew by the time of year I’m going to try a new approach and bring to you some preliminary inspirations underlying  a recent poem.  The next post will show some images related to the poem which will then follow.

But for now, the snowdrops I came across yesterday, February 12th and loved the way they display themselves in glorious clusters. Where did I meet them? In a place in Wexford, Ireland, by name of Aiséirí, a beautiful Irish word meaning re-birth.

Activities overview

It struck me lately that I should jot down for myself a little note of what I have been doing over the last twelve months or so. Writing when and where I can is fairly obvious, goes without saying as they say. However, I was thinking more in terms of the active art of presenting poetry, the reading aloud that I love. The most frequent is reading at the Kilkenny Writers Group, again, when I can. It is a chance to showcase new and old writings and to try them out as spoken pieces rather than merely words on a page.

Other activities have been the Poetathon, the Random Acts of Poetry, the Poetry Flash Mob, the Culture Night DVD and the Ireland/Lebanese Day reading. They have all been most enjoyable. I think I also could make a note here of the status of various submissions and current writing projects, yes, a little work in progress note would not go astray.

The Poetathon was held in the Workhouse Square in the McDonagh Shopping Centre in Kilkenny and consisted of a stream of poets, young and old, reading poetry in successive waves all day long for International Poetry Day. It was very good and seemed to be well received. Worrth doing again. Others feel free to copy.

During arts Week the Kilkenny Writers printed lots of poems by members and scattered them anonymously in all sorts of venues around the City and County. The idea was that members of the public would be confronted, unexpectedly, with poems by unnamed poets in the most unusual places. It was a great idea and well done.

The Poetry Flash Mob took place on the Parade Plaza on a fine sunny day during the Farmers’ Market. Again the idea of bringing poetry to the most unexpected of places was to the forefront. The event was filmed and photographed and recorded. Judging by the number of people who stopped and listened and in some cases joined in it was a great success.

For Culture Night various poets read some of their work in favourite places and the resulting DVD was shown in the Set Theatre. I am looking forward to getting my own contribution in a suitable format to incorporate it here. To merge film and poetry is an ambition of mine and one I hope to develop more over the coming months.

At the Ireland/Lebanese day I was invited to read from Khalil Gibran’s “The Prophet” and did so. As always at such eventsit was also a great chance to meet interesting people and to practise again the art of reading in public. Wonderful.

On a final note, I have, like all writers, a number of works being considered and a considerable number of works being written. I have two submissions with The Poetry Society in the UK. The group of poems called 5 Shorter Poems is with the County

Library being considered for the Poets on Board Scheme. My novel is one of over 500 entered for the Irish Writers Centre Novel Fair. 20 will be chosen for a day’s exposure to agents and publishers, a marvellous opportunity. My ink stained fingers are crossed for these and others yet to come.

Time now to get back to the pen and paper, to confront the white page and fill it, it’s waiting for me……..

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