All posts filed under: Maps

“The Countess at Aylesbury Prison; a lament” by Christine Murray

“dead hearts, dead dreams, dead days of ecstasy, Can you not live again ? Nay, for me never dead.”               (by Constance Markievicz, Easter Week 1917) Refrain: “Now I am a Tower of Darkness” a poem by Freda Laughton. (i). At each day’s dawn, They came to tell me, They came to tell me, That they would be shot. As a child I knew how, Beyond the lamp’s circuit, Lay the shadow of the Shadow of this darkness, I heard the cracking and I knew my birds had flown. Willie Pearse, a carver in stone, Shot, his body melted into lime quickly. As a child I knew how, Beyond the lamp’s circuit, Lay the shadow of the Shadow of this darkness, I do not know if it was the birds, That chaos of gulls and crows that Told me they killed James, but then Their screeching stopped. As a child I knew how, Beyond the lamp’s circuit, Lay the shadow of the Shadow of this darkness, And that silence, that …

Canto 1 of Dante’s Inferno, a transversion by Peter O’Neill

Canto 1 of Dante’s Inferno   In middle-age I found myself in an obscure wood, for the straight road had long since been lost.   Christ, how hard it is for me now to even contemplate how harsh and savage a place it was, without renewing my old fears!   It is a place so bitter that death might come as a relief; But to speak of the good I will tell of the other things too that I found.   I don’t know how I can begin to describe how I entered, having been so drugged in a kind of sleep that I had long since abandoned the straight way.   But, when I reached the foot of the hill, there where the valley ends, and where my heart had been seized with such anguish,   I looked up, and I saw its shoulders dressed in the rays of the planet which directs us all to where we need to go.   Then the fear was a little quieted, which had endured well into …

Poems from “Off Duty” by Katie Donovan

Wedding   “Hasty,” the judge mocked until he read the letter from the consultant, his jaded face changing to pity. We got the green light then, to marry in a hurry.   We turned up in our jeans and limped through the ceremony – upsetting the officiating lady, determined to make this a special occasion.   Outside the registry office we inked a shadow on the next couple: the bride, glowing in her plumage, her robust young groom, their flower girls fidgeting.   My brother and his wife had used their lunch hour to be our witnesses. They went back to work, and my new spouse rode off on his bike: the big triumph that, with six months to live, he could still cycle.   I had to collect our children – the paltry nuptials would have been disappointing – no frocks, no fun – just this boring signing thing, and so I kept it secret, left them with Gran.   I sloped off to the train. It was bright, a May day, and I …

‘The World Reduced to a Sound’ and other poems by Anne Tannam

Unfinished Business   On their wedding day his father said I’ll forgive you everything if you do right by this girl the unfinished education the empty table setting at Christmas the family name unpolished, unloved.   I never met my grandfather a man who lived under the glare of his wife but I remember my grandmother, a small woman her mouth eternally disappointed with life. Dad bringing us down to visit her to the small dark house on Bulfin Road where the furnishings took themselves too seriously.   Later in that same house, I found a studio photograph of the polished family; my grandfather, something familiar in the way he’s leaning against the table my dad, a beautiful child about three years old sitting beside his brothers and sisters, and there my grandmother upright and disapproving staring into the camera, daring it to blink.   That blonde haired little boy the man who loved his wife for sixty years couldn’t wait to cycle home from work gave up his wages every week cooked our fry …

International Poetry Competition: The Vision of 1916 Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow.

Reclaim the Vision of 1916 – a Citizens’ Initiative International Poetry Competition 2016 THEME: The Vision of 1916: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow Inspired by the strong connections between poetry and the Easter Rising – often known as the “Poets’ Revolution” – we are proud to announce that our International Poetry Competition 2016 is now open for submissions. Many of the Rising’s leaders were accomplished poets, including Pádraic Pearse, Joseph Mary Plunkett, James Connolly – and the eminent Thomas MacDonagh. Also acclaimed for his talents as a teacher, playwright, Irish language scholar, and literary theorist, it is in MacDonagh’s honour that we have chosen for the competition’s first prize the Robert Ballagh-designed Thomas MacDonagh Medal (along with a cash award of €1,000). In its aftermath, the Rising motivated a generation of poets of national and international renown – including George Russell (AE), Francis Ledwidge, Padraic Colum, James Stephens, Sean O’Casey, Eva Gore-Booth and William Butler Yeats – to reflect upon its ideals, events, men and women, and consequences. Alongside these can be placed a succession of …