Saturday, August 19, 2017

Trim Salmon of Knowledge Festival!

Trim Salmon of Knowledge Festival 2017!

The Trim Salmon of Knowledge Festival is on Sunday the 27th of August with a number of events running throughout the day including adventure races on the Boyne, a production and re-enactment of the catching of the Salmon of Knowledge by the Trim Musical Society and the Trim Drama Group, a story many will be familiar with from their schooldays, the Salmon of Knowledge Experience by Gerry Meade, the crowning of the Goddess Boann (Queen of the Boyne), novelty races, activities and amusements, cultural traditions with music and dance, stalls from the Trim and Boyne Valley regions, poetry from local writers with readings from 2 to 4pm and a book launch by the Castle Arts group at 2pm, and ending with an evening and night of entertainment throughout Trim venues. And all of this coincides with the start of the Race Around Ireland. Full details of everything on the day if you go to the Trim Tourism website. 

Trim Tourism Network

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Family Fun Day/Scurlogstown Heritage Park 2017!

Family Fun Day/Scurlogstown Heritage Park 2017

Jack Quinn's Public House
Scurlogstown/Heritage Sunday

As part of Heritage Week the Scurlogstown Olympiad group will be holding a "Family Fun Day" in the Heritage Park just across the road from Jack Quinn's on Sunday the 20th of August. All are welcome with games for the children, music and poetry and Pet's Corner and if you should be thirsty just over the road is one of the best known pubs in Meath. Just outside Trim on the main Dublin road Scurlogstown is close to some of the most important visitor attractions in the county and if you happen to be passing on the day why not stop in for a while!

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Poetry Reading/St Elizabeth's Athboy!

Poetry Reading/St Elizabeth's Athboy.

The Meath Writers' Circle were guests last Thursday for an afternoon of poetry and song in St Elizabeth's of Athboy and would like to thank the residents and staff there for what was an enjoyable gathering. Poems that were schoolbook favourites or songs from yesteryear made for an entertaining get together and ended with light refreshments and tea for all. Again a big thank you to everyone there.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

True Grit (1969) - La Boeuf (Glen Campbell), Rooster Cogburn (John Wayne...

The remake of this is perhaps as good as the original which takes nothing from either and John Wayne won an Oscar here for playing Rooster, but both Kim Darby and Glen Campbell put in some great performances here in what is one of the great classic westerns. (As is the remake!) With thanks to youtube and ~ "Glen Campbell - a Tribute" who posted.

Glen Campbell ~ "Highwayman" (Jimmy Webb) LIVE! 1980 L.A. Forum

Sad to hear of the death of Glen Campbell, one of the great contemporary ballad singers. I remember buying an eight track cassette of his back in the early seventies or so, and while the sound from those things was something else, they had a tendency to jam and it did somewhere on the back road from Rathfeigh to Duleek  in the middle of, "Dreams of an Everyday Housewife" or maybe it was, "Gentle on my Mind". Anyway he was a fine singer and guitar player and will be missed and to borrow a line from another song, "Another piece of America's gone!" With thanks to youtube and Diamond's In The Rough who posted.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

The Meath Writers' Circle/August 2017!

The Meath Writers' Circle/ August 2017!

About eight or nine people turned out for the August meeting of The Meath Writers' Circle, so a small number this time. The magazine is finished and with the printer and we should have a proof to go through for our next get together. Thanks to everyone who contributed a poem or article. A number of events coming up, or possible other projects, but yet to be ironed out and interesting to see how it goes. On the night we read some poems and stories and finished off with a song.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Bray Literary Festival 2017!

Bray Literary Festival 2017!

The Bray Literary Festival 2017 has prizes in two categories and a closing date of not later than 5 pm on Thursday the 31st of August. There are prizes here for both poetry and flash fiction with the winner of each category receiving €200 and the runner-up €50. The judges are Breda Wall Ryan (author of the award winning, "In a Hare's Eye ~ Doire Press) for poetry and Catherine Dunne, author of nine novels, including the award winning, "The Things we Know Now" ~ MacMillan). There are a number of terms and conditions and entry is by post only with fees at €5 for a single entry and €10 for three entries. 

Postal address: Bray Literary Festival Competitions, 9 Martello Manor, Bray, Co. Wicklow, A98 T389. 

Check out details at: Here! 

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Dromineer Literary Festival 2017

Dromineer Literary Festival 2017!

The closing date for the Poetry and Short Story competitions is on midnight the 18th of August 2017 so only a few weeks left to get your entries in. You can submit an unlimited number of entries for these competitions but must they must be no more than 40 lines for the poetry and 500 words for the flash fiction section. The entry fees are €5 per poem and €10 per entry in the flash fiction. Post or by email. The judges are Lisa Frank and John Walsh of Doire Press and if by post you need to download an entry form. 

Post to: Peter Hooker, Dromineer Literary Festival, Dromineer, Nenagh, Co, Tipperary.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Bailieborough Poetry Prize 2017!

Bailieborough Poetry Prize 2017!

This one has a closing date for entry of Friday the 1st of September 2017 and a first prize of €300 for the winning poem. Poems must not exceed 50 lines and should be typed, single-spaced.  Up to three poems may be submitted per entry and you may submit as many entries as you wish. Entry by email or by post and details can be found on their website. Entry fee is €5 per poem or for three poems €10 is payable. The competition is open to anyone who has reached their 18th birthday by the closing date of the competition. Entries must not be currently under consideration for publication or competition elsewhere and should be previously unpublished in printed or online format. 

The judge for this year's competition Patrick Chapman and the postal address with payment in euros only, (Made payable to "LitLab") is: Bailieborough Poetry Competition, LitLab - C/O Bailieborough Library, Market Square, Bailieborough , Co Cavan.

Check out full details at : 

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Patrick Kavanagh - Epic

Another poem on war. The time on one that's a little more local and the year of the "Munich Bother" and gods making their own importance.  Read in An Tobar on Ledwidge night. With thanks to youtube and The Word Vault who posted.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Francis Ledwidge Night/An Tobar!

Francis Ledwidge Night/An Tobar!

Francis Ledwidge
An event to mark the centenary of the death of war poet Francis Ledwidge was held in An Tobar Ardbraccan last night. Chaired by Danny Cusack, those in attendance read some of their personal favourites or talked of his writings or reasons for going to war. Other pieces that were read  included Patrick Kavanagh's poem "Epic"  and someone read their own poem on the Blackbird, if I remember correctly. I read A Trench Conversion.  Pieces by  Ledwidge included, Stories of The Boyneside,  his poems, Soliloquy, To One Who Comes Now and Then, The Shadow People, Behind The Closed Eye, The Herons, Avalon, A Soldier's Grave, June, Ascension Thursday 1917, Druidism, Had I a Golden Pound, My Mother, A Little Boy in the Morning, The Wife of Llew, Lullaby, The Blackbirds, and there might be one or two I missed and there are some there I'm not too familiar with. There was also a mention of the Welsh poet Hedd Wyn and Danny Cusack read, The Lament for Thomas McDonagh and In Memoriam Francis Ledwidge by Seamus Heaney. The night finished off with Sean Reilly singing Thomas Moore's, The Minstrel Boy. 

Sunday, July 16, 2017

The Age of Glass/Michael Farry

The Age of Glass/Michael Farry

This book will keep you turning the page as it moves from beginning to end. A particular take or observation on or study in depth on what it is that makes the human, it allows only for a little style, humour or contradiction that in the end knows no secret. Meticulously crafted as it move from one discipline to the next and forensic in detail the poems here slot into place to make up a greater story and are difficult to choose between. There are a number of prize winners here and "The Masterpiece is Nearing Completion" is one of the finest road poems while "An Infant Burial" has its own realizations and "Researching Louisa", which won the Goldsmith Poetry Competition in 2016 is a beautiful poem ... and if I had to cherry pick.... One for your bookshelf. This book is published by Revival Press Limerick and retails at €12. Michael Farry has a blogsite, link to the right.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Scurlogstown Olympiad Recordings 2017!

Scurlogstown Olympiad Recordings 2017!

James Linnane at the Recording Desk

This year's recordings for the Scurlogstown Olympiad CD continued in the Summerhill Comunity Centre on Friday last with James Linnane in the recording seat and no pressure! Michael Durkan was the master of ceremonies for the night and managed to get through more than thirty people who performed either a song or recited their favourite poem or recitation. The quality or standard on the night was very high and for those who have yet to perform it will have to be good. Some of the singing was superb and the surroundings contributed in no small way to the success of the occasion. The final round and place is yet to be decided on.    

Sunday, July 9, 2017

The Meath Writers' Circle July Meeting 2017!

The Meath Writers' Circle July Meeting 2017!

About thirteen people turned out on Thursday night for a little poetry and prose at the Trim Castle Hotel with everyone getting to read a poem (or two - or story!). The magazine should be off to the printers in the next few weeks and interesting to see what the first proof looks like. A big thank you to everyone who contributed a piece though the launch date will not be until close to Christmas. 

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Remembering Ledwidge ~ Dunsany GFC.

Remembering Ledwidge ~ Dunsany GFC  

Noel French, MC for the event!
John Donohue, journalist,
reads an excerpt from Lord Dunsany's autobiography,
"My Ireland"
Jim O' Leary, Noel French and Michael Smith
Emma Griffin
reading, "To Lord Dunsany, on his return from East Africa"
Jim O' Leary of Kilmessan
reading his favourite Ledwidge poem,
"The Cobbler of Sari Gueul"
Liam Cahill, Historian, Broadcaster and Writer
discussing Ledwidge's involvement in
trade union and labour organisations prior to the Great War
Fr. Joe Deegan, parish priest of Slane
sings, "The Blackbird of Slane"
John Quinn of "Goodnight Ballivor I'll Sleep in Trim"
Talking of the Life of Francis Ledwidge
and his book on the poet.
Ledwidge cake baked by Bonnie Smith, Dunsany.
Martin Oakes and Joe Hanly
playing, "On the Road to Passchendaele" 
Composed by Major Gavin Stoddart and Alan Brydon
Frankie de Dobbelaere of the European Union Offices/Kiltale
reads, "In Flanders Fields and Duizend Soldaten" 
Peadar Donohoe cuts the Ledwidge cake.
"The countless white crosses in mute witness stand"
 Niall Brosnan sings, "The Green Fields of France/Eric Bogle

The above are just some of the photographs taken of the performers, or of those who contributed at the "Remembering Ledwidge" event in Dunsany Clubhouse on Sunday last. The event followed a cycle run from Slane taking the back roads through Beauparc, Yellow Furze, Walterstown and Skryne before ending in the GAA grounds. The scenic route and the best road if you want to avoid the traffic that is Navan. The information is with thanks to Noel French and speaking notes John Donohue.

Other readings included Ruth Hickey, "The Lament for Thomas McDonagh" and a letter sent from Lord Dunsany to Thomas McDonagh's daughter. The poem, "Soliloquy" was read by Mary Harrahill - President of The Horace Plunkett ICA Guild Dunsany and two of the pupils of Dunsany School, Matthew Moan and Jessie Agnew gave a talk on what they had learned about the poet. Also the children of the school had a project on display.  

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Scurlogstown Olympiad Trim Haymaking Festival 2017 - Meath Daily

Here's a short video from Meath Daily TV on some of the events at The Scurlogstown Olympiad Haymaking Festival in Trim. Enjoy!

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

The Dermot Healy Poetry Award 2017!

The Dermot Healy Poetry Award 2017!

The cost per poem for this one is €5 with cheques made payable to the, "Five Glens Arts Festival". Online or postal entries accepted and full details, email and postal, at the website address above. General notes require the use of blue or black ink and poems may be previously published and with no restrictions on length. But be sure to check out on website....

Sunday, June 25, 2017

An Tobar/Poetry for Pleasure!

Poetry for Pleasure June 2017!

An Tobar/Ardbraccan Navan

The theme of last Tuesday's get together was on women poets and a good way of getting familiar with or at least making an acquaintance with some whose writing wouldn't normally cross your threshold. The back stories made for an interesting evening and six degrees of separation and all that....

Poets read included; Pheme Glass, Eiléann Ní Chuilleanáin, Dorothy Parker, Elizabeth Shane, Jane Clarke, Iris Hesselden, Anna Akhmatova, Slyvia Plath, Erin Hanson, Margaret Galvin and Orla Fay.

Sean Reilly had an interesting piece on Anna Akhmatova and a mosaic in Mullingar Cathedral and worth looking up. Michael Farry also wrote something on this a number of years back on his blogsite and if I can remember correctly I read something about her and the connection in a newspaper somewhere once upon a time. I wrote a short poem about that revolution once and given that it's 2017 maybe I'll include it in our future magazine. The theme for next month is the poetry of Francis Ledwidge or something relating to that period.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Scurlogstown Olympiad 2017!

Scurlogstown Olympiad and Haymaking Festival 2017!

Michael Durkan and Claire McGing

Eugene Kane, Peter Fahy, Sean Kane, Claire McGing, Margaret Geraghty, Michael Fahy, Bridie Halton,
Michael Durkan and Carmel Murray
Eugene Kane, Sean Kane Peter Fahy, Claire McGing, Margaret Geraghty, Michael Fahy
Bridie Halton, Frank Murphy and Carmel Murray
Marion McDonald, Willie G. Hodgins and Daniel McDonald
Trim Castle and Church across the Boyne

Saturday, June 17, 2017

The Hothous Flowers (&The Dubliners) - The Rose

Ah, the lucky and the strong! With thanks to youtube and Matz Katz who loaded.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Wreath Laying Ceremonies!

Wreath Laying Ceremonies/Laracor and Trim.

The wreath laying ceremony at the grave of poet F. R. Higgins
 in Laracor graveyard.
John Smith, Bernie Murray, Pat Farrelly, Carmel Murray
Willie G. Hodgins, Joan Conlon and Catherine Murray
The wreath laying ceremony at the grave of  poet Tommy Murray
in St Loman's graveyard Trim.
Bernie Murray, John Smith, Carmel Murray,Catherine Murray
And Willie G. Hodgins.

The first event of Olympiad week every year is the wreath laying ceremonies at the graves of two of Meath's best known poets, Tommy Murray and F. R Higgins.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

The Age of Glass/Photos!

The Age of Glass/ Michael Farry

Michael signing copies of The Age of Glass
Dominic Taylor and Tom Muldowney
Paddy Halligan
Barbara Flood
Anne Crinion, Orla Fay and Noeleen Egan
Paddy Smith and Noel French
Nessa O' Mahony and Tom Dredge
Noeleen Egan and Willie G. Hodgins

Friday, June 9, 2017

The Age of Glass/Michael Farry.

The Age of Glass/Michael Farry.

Paddy Halligan, Michael Farry and Anne Crinion
Nessa O' Mahony did the honours last night in the Castle Arch Hotel at the launch of Michael Farry's The Age of Glass. His second book of poetry to date it includes a number of prize winning poems and is no small collection, numbering sixty three in all that reflect on his interest in various fields of study or discipline. Grouped under headings from Genealogy to Gerontology the poems explore in meticulous detail and craft what he describes himself as the Desolate Splinters and you need a little courage to go there. The book is published by Revival Press Limerick and is beautifully produced. Retails at €12.

Other highlights on the night included intros by Nessa herself and Dominic Taylor of Revival and of course the most excellent master of ceremonies Paddy Smith who once again demonstrated that when it comes to wit and entertainment few can compere! Excellent timing. Some photos to follow! 

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

St Patricks Cathedral Dublin - Jonathan Swift

No mention of Trim or Laracor here and there are a number of other videos on his life and times that are worth a look but it is the 350th anniversary of his birth this year. Loaded by st Patrick's Cathedral Dublin.

Saturday, June 3, 2017

The Meath Writers' Circle/ June Meeting 2017!

The Meath Writers' Circle/June Meeting 2017!

About twelve people turned out last Thursday night for the June meeting of The Meath Writers' Circle in the Trim Castle Hotel where it was a nice mixture of poetry read, stories told and an ending with a Stephen Foster song to take us way back in time to the 1850's when the world was young or younger and poets then as now discovered there was no money in it! Anyway a gentle reminder to get your material in for the magazine as the closing date is the end of this month or at least by the fourth of July when the next meeting takes place. Upcoming events this week include the launch of Michael Farry's book, "The Age of Glass" on Thursday night in the Castle Arch Hotel in Trim at 8 pm and on Friday night the wreath laying ceremonies at the graves of the poets F.R. Higgins in Laracor Churchyard and Tommy Murray in St. Loman's Trim. Times to be confirmed.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Rush Poetry Competition 2017!

Rush Poetry Competition 2017!

From Google Images
The closing date for this one is the 30th of June and the entry fee is €5 or €10 for three entries. The poets name is not to appear on the entry/poem and poems must not exceed 40 lines in total. (Excluding title). Posted entries should be typed and printed in black ink on A4 paper at a minimum type size of 12 pt. You can submit by post or email and if by email attach your entry as a pdf or word document. Payment can be made by cheque or postal order, or online via PayPal. Cheques: make payable to Rush Events Committee. Paypal:

Each entrant should supply their full name, postal address, telephone number, email address and an 80 word biography on a separate page to entry. 
The Rush Poetry Competition 2017 is being organised as part of the annual Rush Harbour Festival.     (Email address)

Postal address: Rush Poetry Competition 2017, c/o Emer Byrne, Lower Main Street, Rush, County Dublin.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Michael Farry/Book Launch!

Michael Farry/ Book Launch!

Michael Farry invites all to the launch of his second poetry collection in the Castle Arch Hotel Trim on Thursday the 8th of June at 8 pm. Published by the Revival Press Limerick it's sure to be an interesting evening and further information on the book and life of the author can be had if you click on the link to the right. A founder member of The Boyne Writers Group and former editor of their literary magazine, "Boyne Berries" he has won many awards for his writing and is published widely. Nessa O' Mahony will launch the book on the night and all are welcome.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Gerry - Mangan's Darkness

James Clarence Mangan was born in 1803 and died on the 20th of June in 1849. His mother Catherine Smith came from the parish of Kiltale in County Meath and his father James Mangan was a hedge school teacher from Limerick. His most well known poem, "Dark Rosaleen" was a standard in schoolbooks back in the sixties and according to "A History of Kiltale" which was published in 2000, he is said to have written it on "Long's Hill". Held in high regard by writers such as Yeats and Joyce he was one of the most important poets of the nineteenth century and given his local connections strange that there is nothing here to mark that. But then you could say that of any number of others. We are not good at remembering. With thanks to to "Storymap Dublin" who loaded and youtube.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Fleadh Na Mí 2017!

Fleadh Na Mí 2017!

Ann Finnegan
Ann Finnegan, Uachtaráin Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann, launched this year's Fleadh Na Mí in Jack Quinn's Public House in Scurlogstown last night with a talk or opening address given by Dr Antóin Mac Gabhann. The weekend features a number of different events in the town of Trim including dancing competitions in the Diocesan Hall, music by the Trim Comhaltas Naomh Padraig Céilli Band, the Trim Singers Circle Night in Téach Scurlog and competitions for vocal solos, duets, groups and céili bands etc. 


Wednesday, May 17, 2017

An Tobar/Poetry for Pleasure May 2017!

An Tobar/Poetry for Pleasure May 2017!

An Tobar/Ardbraccan
The theme of this month's meeting of the Poetry for Pleasure Group at Ardbraccan was Northern poets or poems relating to the province in some way. Seamus Heaney seemed to be a favourite for many as was Patrick Kavanagh but others included Michael Harding, Derek Mahon, William Allingham, Bobby Sands, Mike Martin and Anthony Cronin. One or two others got a mention and I'll have to chase them down, but for now! On what was a beautiful evening at least fifteen people turned out and the next get together will be on Tuesday the 20th of June when the theme will be women writers or perhaps poems about women? Anyway sure to be interesting.

Those other poets who got a mention on the night were Madge Herron and Pheme Glass!

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Yeovil Literary Prize 2017!

Yeovil Literary Prize 2017!

Corton Denham near Yeovil
Daily Mail/Google Images
The closing date for this one is the 31st of May so just a little time left to get your entries in. There are four categories in all with prizes for Short Story, Poetry, Novel and Writing without Restrictions, which sounds interesting. The judges are Brianna Beehler for the Novel category, Anna Wilson for the Short Story, David Wheatley for the Poetry and Kiran Millwood Hargrave for the Writing without Restrictions. The prizes for the short story and poetry categories are £500, £200, and £100 and for the Writing without Restrictions are £200, £100 and £50. The entry fees for Poetry and Short Stories are £7 each with the Novel entry fee set at £12 and the Writing without Restrictions fee £5. You'll need to visit the site for an entry form and full details. Entry is possible both online and by post.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Rod Stewart - I Was Only Joking

Great song, great lyrics, from a studio version (Foot Loose & Fancy Free 1977). Loaded by TrixxyKatt and with thanks to youtube.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

The Meath Writers' Circle/May 2017!

The Meath Writers' Circle/May 2017!

Trim Castle Hotel/Google Images
About thirteen people turned out last Thursday night for the monthly meeting of The Meath Writers' Circle in the Trim Castle Hotel with a number of items discussed and poems and stories read. The annual magazine needs a lot more material in and hopefully it all comes together by the end of summer. This will be the third issue to date and while there is no overall theme there are any number of anniversaries out there including Ledwidge, Swift, Jane Austen, the Russian Revolution, the Fenian Proclamation, Thomas Ashe, JFK, The Battle of Messines WW1, Ernesto "Che" Guevara, Martin Luther's Ninety Five Theses, Amelia Earhart, Mary Queen of Scots, Sputnik, the Hindenburg and anything you might think of on the lighter side. Also of local note and by the time the magazine comes out it will be the 50th anniversary of the Scurlogstown Olympiad at the Old Mill, so nice to get some material on that. Thirty years also since the Joshua Tree so plenty to write about.

* Some other notable anniversaries worth considering, the death of Steve Biko, Elvis Presley, Eva Peron, Ernest Shackleton, Princess Dianna, 50 years since the release of Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, and I think 30 years since the release of Star Wars and it's 100 years since the apparitions at Fatima.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Waterford Poetry Prize 2017!

Waterford Poetry Prize 2017!

Waterford City/Google Images
The closing date for this one is 12 noon on Monday the 26th of June so plenty of time to get something in. There is a first prize of €400 plus attendance at a designated writing course at the Molly Keane Writers Retreat, Ardmore in 2018. The competition is open to all writers living on the island of Ireland and the prize will be presented at the Imagine Arts Festival incorporating the Waterford Writers Weekend which runs from October the 19th to the 29th in venues throughout Waterford city and county. 

The prize has emerged from the influence of the late Waterford writer Seán Dunne and there is no entry fee or age restrictions. Postal entries only and there should be no more than one entry per person submitted. There are a number of entry conditions and an entry form to be downloaded so be sure to check them out. There is a second prize of €300 and a third one of €200 and the winners will be requested to read their entry at the presentation event in Waterford. 

Original entries only and they must not have been previously published or printed online. Entries which have received awards in other competitions or have been submitted elsewhere are ineligible. Entries to: The Waterford Poetry Prize 2017, The Arts Office, Waterford City & County Council, Civic Offices, Dungarvan, Co. Waterford.

Friday, April 28, 2017

National Poetry Day 2017/Castle Arch!

National Poetry Day 2017/Trim County Meath!

Orla Fay of The Boyne Writers chaired last night's event in the Castle Arch Hotel in Trim to mark National Poetry Day 2017 with readers from a number of different writing groups in the county taking part including The Meath Writers' Circle, The Navan Writers and The Poetry for Pleasure reading group from An Tobar, Ardbraccan. The evening ended with tea and refreshments and the presentation of free copies of their literary magazines to all who came.