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Thursday, April 16, 2009

Daytime Creative Writing with Susan Millar DuMars at Galway Arts Centre

This May Galway Arts Centre presents two daytime classes for all those beginner and continuing creative writing students out there, both facilitated by Susan Millar DuMars. Susan Millar DuMars writes both poetry and fiction. A collection of her stories, American Girls, was published by Lapwing Press in 2007; her first collection of poetry, Big Pink Umbrella, was published last year by Salmon Poetry. Her second collection of poems, Dreams For Breakfast, will be published by Salmon Poetry next year.

The classes are suitable for both beginning and continuing creative writing students, working in either poetry or fiction. Students will spend their week responding to writing exercises designed to inspire, rather than inhibit. In class, they will receive gentle feedback on their work from their classmates and from the teacher. The classes takes place on Monday afternoons, 2-3.30pm, commencing on Monday May 11th and Tuesday afternoons, 3-4.30pm, commencing on Tuesday May 12th.

The cost to participants is 90 Euro with an 80 Euro concession price. Booking is essential as places are limited. For booking please contact Galway Arts Centre, 47 Dominick Street, phone 091 565886 or email

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Choice of Three Poetry Workshops with Kevin Higgins at Galway Arts Centre

This May Galway Arts Centre is offering aspiring poets a choice of three poetry workshops, all facilitated by poet Kevin Higgins, whose best-selling first collection, The Boy With No Face, published by Salmon Poetry, was short-listed for the 2006 Strong Award for Best First Collection by an Irish poet. Kevin’s second collection of poems, Time Gentlemen, Please, was published last year by Salmon Poetry and his work will also feature in the forthcoming anthology Identity Parade: New British and Irish Poets (Bloodaxe, 2010).

His third collection Frightening, New Furniture will be published next year. Kevin is an experienced workshop facilitator and several of his students have gone on to achieve publication success or win major prizes for their poetry.

Each workshop will run for eight weeks, commencing the week of May 11th.They will take place on Tuesday evenings, 7-8.30pm; Wednesday afternoons, 2-3.30pm and on Thursday afternoons, 2-3.30pm.

The Tuesday evening and Wednesday afternoon workshops are open to both complete beginners as well as those who’ve been writing for some time. The Thursday afternoon workshop is an Advanced Poetry Workshop, suitable for those who’ve participated in poetry workshops before or had poems published in magazines. The cost to participants is €90, with an €80 concession rate.

Places must be paid for in advance. To reserve a place contact Victoria at reception at Galway Arts Centre, 47 Dominick Street, phone 091 565886 or email

Launch of new-look Amnesty Freedom Café with poetry, talks, music and, of course, great coffee

The Freedom Café makeover celebration!

What: Launch of the new-look Amnesty Freedom Café with poetry, talks, music and, of course, great coffee

Who: Poets ; Rita Ann Higgins, Mary O Malley, Kevin Higgins and Pete Mullineaux

Musicians ; Bobo, Ivan & Anna, and Nicole Blue.

Launch by Noeleen Hartigan Programmes Director Amnesty International Ireland

Where: Amnesty International Freedom Café 2-3 Middle St. Galway

When: 12.30 - 9pm on Thursday 14 May (See below for more details)

Since it opened seven years ago the Amnesty International Freedom Café has become a vital and lively part of Galway’s community. Over that time nearly one thousand people have volunteered in the café and on the various human rights campaigns we have worked on. The café recently received a long overdue makeover and will now be open from 8am every morning. We think this calls for a celebration - we are delighted to invite the Galway public to our opening celebration on Thursday, 14 May. “Our café has long been a hub for activists and campaigners in Galway and we hope the new layout and extended opening hours will help to make this an even better location for community organising,” said Sarah Clancy , Campaigns Officer with Amnesty International Ireland. “We would like to extend an open invitation to likeminded arts and social justice organisations to make use of our café as a location for meetings, film screenings and events.”

‘Space for discussion’ is the theme of the first part of the day. Rita Ann Higgins, Mary O’ Malley and Kevin Higgins, three of Galway’s best known poets will hold a free lunchtime poetry reading from 12.30pm until 2.00pm. These three poets are well known locally for dealing with issues of social justice in their work and this will be no exception. The lunchtime poetry readings will be followed by some lively performance poetry and music by Pete Mullineaux and a reading by journalist and author Michael McCaughan from his forthcoming book about the the case of death row inmate ,writer and political activist Mumia Abu Jamal.

The events will continue with music from some of Galway’s favourite performers including Nicole Blue, BO- BO and Ivan & Anna all of whom are regulars at the long running Unchained Melodies sessions that take place every Thursday in the Freedom Café. After the music Noeleen Hartigan , Programmes Director for Amnesty International, will officially open the revamped Amnesty International Freedom Café at 5 pm with a discussion of our work in Ireland.

For further information please contact: Sarah Clancy, Campaigns Officer, Amnesty International or 086 792 4095 Justin Moran, Communications Co-ordinator, Amnesty International 01 863 8300, 085 814 8986

Sarah Clancy, Campaigns and Regional Development Amnesty International Irish Section2-3 Middle St Galway.sclancy@amnesty.ie0867924095

Log on to and take action today.

BBC RADIO 4 Poetry Slam 2009

BBC Radio 4 Poetry Slam 2009

BBC Radio 4 will be broadcasting a second series of Poetry Slam programmes in 2009. New Belfast Community Arts Initiative has been asked to host the All Ireland Regional Heat taking place on Thursday 18th June.

A Poetry Slam is a knockout performance poetry competition in which poets perform their own work in front of an audience and a panel of judges, and are given scores by the judges based on content, style, delivery and level of audience response. Poetry Slamming began in the United States in the 1980s and is now thriving all around the world. There are hundreds of slams run all over Britain every year, and Radio 4 will be showcasing, through its own slam, some of the best performers in the United Kingdom.

Radio 4 ran its first Poetry Slam in 2007, and this will be the second. There will be three broadcast programmes, comprising two semi-finals and a final anticipated to transmit in late September and early October 2009.

To ensure a wide geographical spread, we will be running our three broadcast programmes after a series of nine regional heats, which will reflect the slam scene around the country.
These will not be for broadcast, but out of them two winners from each heat will go forward to the broadcast semi-finals, making a total of nine participants in each semi-final. Three winners from each semi-final will go forward to the final. These qualifying rounds will be run in accordance with the same slam rules which will govern the broadcast semi-finals and final, so that all performers around the country will be taking part under the same conditions. Rules for performance and judging in the Radio 4 slam follow as closely as possible the generally accepted slam conventions, with a few specific points included in order to create a competition suitable for broadcast.

The full rules and criteria will be available at from Saturday 9th May 2009

If you have won a slam in the past three years and feel that you meet all other criteria as laid out in the rules (available through the above link) then please complete an application form (also available at the above link) and return it to us by Monday 1st June.

In the event that eligible applications exceed number of places, NBCAI reserves the right to draw participants by lottery according to province to ensure that all regions are equally and fairly represented.

We look forward to receiving your application

Chelley McLearCo-ordinator Poetry In Motion Schools and CommunityNew Belfast Community Arts InitiativeUnit 4 Clanmil Arts & Business CentreBridge Street Belfast BT1 1LUT 028 9092 3493 F 028 9092

Learn how to Stand and Deliver with Miceál Kearney

It isn’t the easiest thing to do, to stand-up in front of strangers and read your work — but do it often enough and it will become like breathing.
From winning the 2006 Cúisle Poetry Slam in Limerick, the 2007 Cúirt Grand Slam, the 2007 North Beach Nights Grand Slam, the 2007 Baffle Bard in Loughrea and also the 2008 In-Sight of Raftery Poetry Grand Slam in Mayo — Galway Poet Miceál Kearney certainly knows how to stand and deliver a poem. He has read his poetry throughout Ireland and internationally from the sunny seaside resort of Brighton, to the Vilenica Festival in Slovenia to the Green Mill in Chicago. Short-listed for the 2007 Cinnamon Press Poetry Collection Award. Doire Press published Inheritance, Miceál’s debut collection last year.

Miceal is available for the following:
· Tips on performing
· Coaching
· Poetry readings/ performance

· Editing
· Feedback

Enquires: 087-9139698

Michael Cody reading at Athenry Heritage Centre

The Athenry Heritage Centre in association with Poetry Ireland presents an evening of poetry with Michael Coady. The renowned Tipperary poet will be joined by the singer Claire McLoughlin in the unique setting of the Athenry Heritage Centre, Friday 8th May at 8:00pm. There will also be a guest appearance by Miceál Kearney, winner of the 2007 Cúirt Festival Poetry Grand Slam. Admission is €5 per person which includes complimentary wine and refreshments. Tickets are available on the door or they can be reserved by calling the centre on 091 844661. Further details are available on

Michael Coady was born in 1939 in Carrick-on-Suir, County Tipperary, where he has worked as a teacher, musician and writer. Winner of the Patrick Kavanagh Award for Poetry in 1979 and also of Listowel Writers' Week and RTE Francis McManus short story awards, he has published four collections with The Gallery Press: Two for a Woman, Three for a Man (1980), Oven Lane (1987), All Souls (1997) and One Another (2003). Relay Books published Full Tide, a miscellany, in 1999. Bursaries from An Chomhairle Ealaíon/The Arts Council enabled him to travel in Newfoundland and the U.S.A. in the 1980s. The epic story of Irish emigration to America has been a significant element in his work in relation to lost family ties and their 'emotional archaeology.' In his critically-acclaimed All Souls, and again in One Another, he successfully integrated poetry, prose and his own photographs in works of overall thematic unity. His writing emerges from an intimately known anchorage of place, with abiding themes of time and chance and memory, set against the human interplay of unsung lives and destinies. Humour and compassion are notable components of his work.

Michael Coady has directed workshops, broadcast on radio and television and given readings at arts events in Ireland and abroad. In 1998 he was elected a member of Aosdána, and in 2004 he received the eighth annual Lawrence O'Shaughnessy Award for Poetry of the University of St Thomas Centre for Irish Studies, St Paul, Minnesota. Michael Coady was Heimbold Professor of Irish Studies at Villanova University in 2005. He is married, with three children, and continues to live in the town where he was born.

Alan Burgess
CSP Manager
Athenry Heritage Centre
St. Mary's
The Square
County Galway
Tel: 00353 (0) 91 844661
Fax: 00353 (0) 91 850674

May North Beach Poetry Nights Slam with Salena Godden

Salena Godden
North Beach Poetry Nights presents on Monday May 11th at 9 pm in The Crane Bar, Sea Road, Galway the North Beach Poetry Nights' May 2009 Slam with guest poet from the London performance scene: Salena Godden.
SALENA's work has been published in various magazines including Drawbridge, Rising, The Illustrated Ape, Nude Magazine, Salzburg Review, Trespass, The Gay Times, Le Gun, Litro, The Guardian, The Camden New Journal & Plectrum. Her fiction and poetry has also been in many anthologies including Penguin’s IC3, Canongate’s Fire People, Serpents Tail’s Croatian Nights and Hodder & Stoughton’s Oral. This spring, 2009, her writing will appear in two new anthologies, Punk Fiction (Picador) and Dwang, alongside the likes of Dan Fante, Cathi Unsworth and Billy Childish among many others.

Salena Godden is the lyricist and lead singer of underground eclectic ska jazz band SaltPeter. SaltPeter’s latest albumHunger’s The Best Sauce was released in October 2007. It featured in The Critical List in The Independent On Sunday as one of the most outstanding albums of 2007. Salena has also collaborated and performed with the likes of Alabama 3, Coldcut and Simple Kid. HarperCollins / HarperPress won the auction for her debut childhood memoir Springfield Road to be published in hardback in 2010. She has performed on BBC Radio's Women's Hour, The Verb and Bespoken Word plus she hosted and programmed her own radio show on Resonance FM and BBC LDN, The SaltPeter Radio Show.

Poets wishing to take part in the 2-Round Slam please bring along two three-minute poems, preferrably memorized. The winner of each month's Slam goes forward to the 2009 North Beach Poetry Nights' Grand Slam in December 2009. The prize for the Grand Slam winner is publication of a collection of her/his work.

("Inheritance" debut collection by 2007 winner Miceál Kearney available in Charlie Byrne's bookshop and from

Admission 5/ 3 Euro.

info: john walsh @ 091-593290

North Beach Poetry Nights acknowledges the financial support of The Arts Council and Galway City Council.

2009 Cúirt Festival Over The Edge Showcase Reading

Orla Higgins

Noelle Lynskey

Noel Harrington

Jenny McCudden

Val Nolan
The 2009 Cúirt Festival Over The Edge showcase reading takes place at the Town Hall Theatre, Galway on Thursday, April 23rd, 11am. The five featured authors this year are Orla Higgins, Noelle Lynskey, Noel Harrington, Jenny McCudden and Val Nolan.

The Over the Edge reading series began in January 2003. Each month, the Over the Edge: Open Reading puts the spotlight on emerging poets and fiction writers - sessions end with an open-mic, where anyone can get in on the act. Co-organisers Kevin Higgins and Susan Millar DuMars (host) are grateful for the continued support of Galway City Library, Galway City Council, The Arts Council, Poetry Ireland, The Cúirt Festival and, especially, the many talented writers who have taken part in the series during the past six years.

Orla Higgins lives in Galway city. After taking a number of creative writing classes with Susan Millar DuMars at Galway Technical Institute, she is currently studying on the MA in Writing programme at NUIG where she is working on her first novel. She also lectures part-time at the University with the Department of Marketing and the Huston School of Film. Orla was a Featured Reader at the September 2008 Over The Edge: Open Reading in Galway City Library.

Noelle Lynskey is from Roscommon, but now lives in Portumna. She is facilitatorof Portumna Pen Pushers and The Maple Poetry Group. She is also anactive participant in BAFFLE, Loughrea. While juggling the joys ofmothering, her duties as a Community Pharmacist and organising ArtsEvents in Portumna, Noelle is working towards a collection of poetry.Previous publications include Cuirt, West 47, Crannog, Glance, Scriobh and Maple Leaves. Noelle was a Featured Reader, as part of the Maple Poetry Group, at the May 2005 Over The Edge: Open Reading in Galway City Library.

Considered one of Limerick’s White House Poets, Noel Harrington has been published in The Stinging Fly, Revival, The Flosca Winners’ Chapbook, Boyne Berries, Crannóg, Moloch, and The Stony Thursday Book. Revival Press published a chapbook of his poems in 2007. Noel was a Featured Reader at the October 2008 Over The Edge: Open Reading.

Jenny McCudden is originally from Naas in county Kildare. She now lives in Galway and works as Western Correspondent for TV3 News. Jenny began her career as a journalist working for the Sunday World and TV3 News. She spent five years in the UK, working for the BBC, before returning to take up her current position with TV3. She has just completed a Masters in Writing at NUI Galway and is currently working on a non-fiction book Death on Irish Roads as well as other works of fiction. Jenny was A Featured Reader at the January Over The Edge: Open Reading in Galway City Library.

Val Nolan teaches contemporary literature and creative writing at NUI, Galway. He has been published in Ché in Verse, Crannóg, Southword, Revival, and Möbius. He regularly contributes criticism to publications including The Sunday Business Post, Poetry Ireland Review, PN Review, and The Stinging Fly. NUIG awarded him this year's Oliver St. John Gogarty scholarship. Val was a Featured Reader at the December 2007 Over The Edge: Open Reading.

If you, or a writers group you belong to, would be interested in taking part in the Over The Edge Cúirt showcase in the future contact Over The Edge c/o Galway Arts Centre, 47 Dominick Street, Galway or send a sample of six of your poems or two thousand words of your fiction to us at Over The Edge, 3 Carbry Road, Newcastle, Galway and we will consider you for a Featured Reading at one of the Over The Edge: Open Readings which will make you eligible for the shortlist for the subsequent Cúirt Festival Over The Edge showcase.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Cúirt Festival Launch of Poems for Patience and The Cat's Cradle

Margaret Flannery, Arts Co-ordinator Galway University Hospitals Arts Trust

Poems for Patience
Selected and introduced by Philip Schultz

The Galway University Hospitals Arts Trust continues the very successful Poems for Patience series. Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Philip Schultz, who also reads at the festival – 8.30pm Town Hall Theatre, Galway Thursday April 23rd - has selected 21 poems from a wide range of poets, which will be displayed throughout the waiting areas in University Hospital, Galway and Merlin Park University Hospital.

The Cat’s Cradle
Organised by Kevin Higgins

Volume 4 of The Cat’s Cradle comes to life under the organisation of Kevin Higgins, Merlin Park University Hospital Writer in Residence. Using reminiscence techniques, Kevin has compiled stories by patients at Units Five and Six of Merlin Park Hospital. The theme of The Cat’s Cradle this year is ‘Hard Times Come Again’. Patients talk about their memories of hard times past – everything from straw mattresses to World War II – and offer Brian Cowen some advice.

Both events will be launched at University Hospital, Galway at 11am on Friday 24th April.

Directions: from the main entrance of University Hospital, Galway go through the foyer and take the second right.

Ex-Horslips Drummer & Lyricist at North Beach Poetry Nights

Ex-Horslips drummer and lyricist, poet Eamonn Carr reads at North Beach Poetry Nights in the Crane Bar on Monday April 20th at 9pm.

Eamonn Carr is a significant figure in the Irish artistic and cultural scene. In the late 1960s he co-founded Tara Telephone, the music and poetry group of the Dublin beat scene. Tara Telephone published everyone from Marc Bolan to Allan Ginsberg, Brian Patten, Seamus Heaney, Pearse Hutchinson, Eilean Ni Chuilleanain, Brendan Kennelly, Adrian Mitchell, Pete Brown in their magazines and broadsheets. And among those who read with Tara Telephone, in addition to Eamon and Peter Fallon were Philip Lynott and Roger McGough.

Following on from Tara Telephone, in the 1970's Eamonn co-founded Horslips, the hugely influential band which is credited with creating the musical genre known as Celtic Rock, and in which he is also a drummer, conceptualist and lyricist. Eamon has also promoted musicians and artists, and works as a journalist, writer and commentator on culture, politics, arts, music and sport as well as an award winning broadcaster. Eamon was a featured poet at the Sean Dunne Festival in Waterford in March 2009. Eamonn was born in Co. Meath and lives in Dublin.

The Origami Crow, Journey into Japan, World Cup Summer 2002, by Eamonn Carr

As a sports columnist for a Dublin daily, Eamonn Carr watched the unfolding drama of the 2002 World Cup finals firsthand in Japan. Against the intense public spectacle of media attention following the controversial departure of Ireland captain Roy Keane, Carr followed his own private journey - a lifelong quest to visit the shrines and places of the famed poet Matsuo Basho, recognized master of haiku. In a volume of spare, elegant prose poetry and his own haiku chronicling impressions and revelations of that journey, Carr explores the deep interrelationships found within the contrasts of ancient and modern, nation and individual, crowd and solitude, loss and victory in a work that is at once a poetry collection, a travel journal and a sports commentary – with a little music as well.

This is Eamon Carr's first collection of poetry and the profundity and depth of the work is a just reward for the long wait. This is an exciting book because of the beauty of the work itself, and its significance as another important milestone in the work of a great artist and a man who truly has the soul of a poet. The book is part poetry collection, part travel log and part Eamon's commentary and insight into the Roy Keane/Mick McCarthy 'debacle'. And some of our current heroes (Robbie Keane, Damien Duff and Shay Given) are in there as well!!

"I can't praise it enough. I would like to start a campaign to put this on the top of the best seller list - where Eamon Carr belongs" John Waters

"It's a gem" Stuart Clarke, Hot Press

"witty and very readable tome." Eugene Masterson, The Sunday World

"A great read" Con Houlihan

Poets wishing to take part in the 2-Round Slam please bring along two three-minute poems, preferrably memorized.

The winner of each month's Slam goes forward to the 2009 North Beach Poetry Nights' Grand Slam in December 2009. The prize for the Grand Slam winner is publication of a collection of her/his work.

("Inheritance" debut collection by 2007 winner Miceál Kearney available in
Charlie Byrne's bookshop and from http:///)

We look forward to seeing you at The Crane on
Monday April 20th.

Admission 5/ 3 Euro.

North Beach Poetry Nights gratefully acknowledges the support
of the Arts Council and Galway City Council Arts Office.

info: john walsh @ 091-593290

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Emerging Galway Poets Make Good

Miceál Kearney
Celeste Augé
Miceál Kearney has been selected to take part in the Poetry Ireland Introductions readings while Celeste Aúgé has been shortlisted for this year's Hennessy Awards for New Irish Writing.
Galway poet Miceál Kearney will be reading as part of the 2009 Poetry Ireland Introductions series on Wednesday May 20th @ 6.30 p.m in the Irish Writers’ Centre, 19 Parnell Square, Dublin 1 along with Mark Baker, Olive Broderick & Jane Clarke. Miceál Kearney, 28, has been published in magazines in Ireland, the UK and USA. He has won the Cuisle, Baffle, Cúirt and North Beach Nights' Poetry Grand Slams. He was short-listed for the 2007 Cinnamon Press Poetry Collection Award and the 2008 Cinnamon Press Short-Story Award. Miceál's debut collection of poems, Inheritance, was published by Doire Press last year.
Celeste Augé was born in Canada, but moved to Galway when she was 12 years old. She writes both poetry and fiction. Her poems have appeared in a wide variety of literary journals. She has read her work as part of Poetry Ireland's Introductions and also at the Cúirt Festival/Over The Edge showcase reading in 2006. In 2006 also, she was awarded the Publication Assistance Grant by Galway County Council. Tornadoes For The Weathergirl, a chapbook of her poems, was published in 2007. Her first full collection, The Essential Guide to Flight, published by Salmon Poetry is launched in Galway City Museum on Saturday, May 9th. Celeste has been shortlisted for this year's Sunday Tribune Hennessy Awards for New Irish Writing in the Emerging Poetry category.