Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Poetry Ireland Introductions

I attended the first evening of Poetry Ireland Introductions 2010 on Monday evening. Four poets read and whoever organised the programme deserves great praise for presenting such a variety of talent. Four completely different styles of writing and presentation - there certainly is no bias towards one particular poetry school in the Introductions choices.

First up was Andrew Caldicott. We have published some of his work in Boyne Berries. He writes short poems about apparently simple things - a pregnancy test, his grandfather's death, the train to Wexford, worms - in a quiet, very well composed way.

Next was Jessica Colley whose style of writing is much different. You want to stop her and ask to see the text so you can read again and savour the words and meanings. A poem about a train again but as a way of writing about her whole family, also poems about dreams and a grandmother she never knew but imagines was very like her.

Martin Dyer I met at the Kavanagh weekend last year where he won the poetry collection competition. His delivery is wonderful, a great sense of timing which enhance the slightly off-beat sketches of people and situations many from the west - the gillie talking to a nun's class in secondary school, closing rural post offices and the man who writes wedding speeches for everyone but himself. Don't let the humour fool you there is a darkness at the heart of many of these poems/dramatic monologues.

Finally Peter Goulding (picture above) who has been in Boyne Berries and has attended our Open Mic sessions. He started with a joke about his speech impediment which put people at their ease. His poems were about simple things but with a wry touch which emphasised their humour. Two about Wicklow, cows, jackdaws and people, one about a small town on Route 66 in Arizona and his great take on the villanelle - The only problem with the villanelle is that the repetition grates like hell.

A great night, met lots of poets I knew and some I didn't including two who are reading tonight, Niamh MacAlister and Connie Roberts. Good luck to them and to all the others. Get along there if you can - the venue is the Irish Writers Centre, Parnell Square, Dublin, 7pm.


Padhraig Nolan said...

Dammit Michael, I was there too and sorry now I missed the chance to say hello! It was a great night indeed - very enjoyable reading.

Michael Farry said...

Sorry I missed you Padhraig. I didn't stay around for long after.

Mags Treanor said...

I did the Poetry Ireland Intro's myself a few years ago, have to say it's a great idea and a great opportunity. I felt like a real poet for a night...