Interview on Southside Radio

I was delighted to be interviewed on Southside Radio in Dundrum recently on their religious affairs programme, Vision. Their programme was focused loosely on the Passover festival but I was in to read some of my poems from Jewtown and discuss what it was like to be raised Jewish in Ireland. I read 3 poems from Jewtown. I also was asked to pick 3 songs that meant something to my life. When I was asked, I hadn't realised that the programme was a religious affairs one so I just picked 3 songs that I liked. As Jarvis Cocker and Common People was much more of an influence on my life than the doctrine of schools, I'm happy with my choices! Click on the link below to download/listen to the...

Strokestown Poetry Festival 

I had a fantastic time at the Strokestown International Poetry Festival this year where my poem, Conception, was shortlisted in their competition. I didn't realise what a huge prize was up for grabs when I entered for whatever reason so not realising that I was in with a chance to win €2000 was good as they don't tell you who wins until the very end of the festival after everyone reads their poem. They used to do a countdown to the winner, which they've changed now, thankfully. Part of being shortlisted means that you become part of the festival programme and you get to do a reading. Mine was on the Saturday morning and I think it was well received. The weird thing though is that in the audience are really really big names in the world of poetry, some of who appeared in my Leaving Cert! I got to see two interviews. The first was with...

Looking forward to Strokestown

I'm delighted to have been shortlisted for the Strokestown Poetry Competition and as part of this, I'm been given a 15 minute slot on Saturday to read some of my poetry. I'm going to read from Jewtown and might try out one or two that I don't usually read. My shortlisted poem is called Conception and I wrote it about a year ago after putting away some of Emrys' baby things into the attic. You can read it here. I'm also looking forward to seeing some poetry especially Doireann NíGríofa's interview with Paddy Bushe and I also hope to see James Harpur's talk on the history of poetry.

Flare 02

I'm very much enjoying this "long sheet" of Flare which featured some fantastic poets from Ireland and beyond. 

Poetry Month, Limerick

Have you ever wished you could read a poem while looking in the window of a shop selling blinds?   Thanks so much to Dominic Taylor for allowing me to be part of Limerick's Poetry Month, where poems about Limerick are put up around the city. My poem about Father Creagh, he of the Limerick Pogrom, is up at Russell...

Upcoming Reading: Listeners

I'm delighted to be asked to read at the Listener's session and open mic as one of the two featured readers in March. I will be reading with Adam Wyeth. Thanks to Paul Bregazzi and Daragh Bradish for the kind invitation. The event takes place near Marlay Park in the Eden House. If anyone is around the Dublin Mountains, feel free to drop by. This may be the closest reading I've had to my family house so I might make a night of it!

Tears and Laughter: Esther Morris

I've written on this blog before about my great grandmother, Esther Morris, who was a minor playwright. I mentioned at the Launch of the Representation of Jews in Irish Literature about her to Barry Montgomery, one of the researchers in the project, and lo and behold, a few weeks later, he found a copy of her plays. Below are the first few pages...

Jewtown amongst 4,000 books

Jewish Book Week started last night and I took the chance to get a snap of my book among the 4,000 other books featured in the festival. I also picked up a copy of the Jewish Book Week brochure and had a peek...

Mentoring Session with James Harpur

I never thought I'd travel to Cork for an hour, but last Friday I had booked myself in for a manuscript makeover with James Harpur. This was the second time I've used this mentoring service, which is part of the Cork Spring Poetry Festival and I wanted to see how some of my new work was shaping up. Although I only had an hour, I managed to steal a little bit of time before and after the session. I had lunch in Iyer's, which was really really tasty and when I was trying to find my car after the session, I walked by Sless Carpets, formerly owned by Jewish people from Cork. I was delighted with James' feedback and would recommend this session to any poet, whatever their experience. It's given me a new focus for my poems and I think I have unlocked the key as to why I didn't think some of the poems weren't working. [gallery size="medium"...