Saturday, November 27, 2010

Patrick Kavanagh Poetry Award 2010 - 2

I attended the Patrick Kavanagh prizegiving in Inniskeen last evening, defying the snow forecasts and the difficulty in actually finding the place - signposting bad. Last year I was a minor celebrity there - joint third - this year just a member of the audience.

A great night, full house, good entertainment and good poetry from the winner and the join second-placed poets. The winner as I already blogged was Connie Roberts who flew in from New York to be there. The joint second placed poets were Helena Nolan, originally from Kilkenny, who lives in Dublin, and Jim Maguire from Wexford. Jim had been awarded third prize in 2008. Both are well known and well published poets. The three happy poets pictured above.

The adjudicator, Brian Lynch gave a great introduction in which he talked about the judging process - there were in the region of 130 entries this year. He then spoke about each of the three finalists and it's quite obvious that he reads and re-reads and takes great care with his judging. As he should of course this is one of the top prizes in Irish poetry. More about this later perhaps.

Then the thee poets read - two or three poems each. Great performances from each, confident presentations of arresting poems, nice introductions, obvious delight at their achievements and the audience loved it.

Then a talk from Eileen Battersby of the Irish Times on Kavanagh. She had difficulty finding Inniskeen also but gave a wide ranging talk on the importance of Kavangh and his continue dinfluence on Irish writers, poets and prosewriters.

The evening ended with a dramatisation of part of Kavanagh's long poem The Great Hunger by actor/performer Peter Duffy. It was a fitting end to a night's celebration of poetry and Kavanagh. his own words are still powerful and moving.

Home then though the Kavanagh week-end continues. No snow, some frost, sheet lightning in the east. A light covering of snow in Trim in the morning.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I am in Canada and am proud of all the winners as well as the organizers and the meticulous reviews that are without doubt daunting and sometimes may be hard to discriminate at such a high quality of the product being examined. I definitely will be following future presentations and may even plan a trip to get a first hand view at these towering spirits.