Saturday, August 30, 2014

Pearl Jam Masters Of War

Eddie Vedder here does a superb take on the old Bob Dylan classic "Masters of War" but there's more of them than ever now and no protest singers and the media is selling soft soap and the young people are gone and water poverty is just down the road. Papers Please? With thanks to the guy who posted!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Dromineer Literary Festival 2014!

Dromineer Literary Festival 2014!

Dromineer/From Google Images.
Here's a competition that has been kind to local writers and has a closing date that's now approaching fast.  (September 8) Two competition in fact, one for poetry and the other for flash fiction. Entrants must be over 18 years of age and the fees are €5 per poem with the numbers of entries unlimited and €10 for the flash fiction competition. Again with the number of entries unlimited. Mathew Sweeney is the judge for the poetry competition and Donal Ryan for the flash fiction. The max number of lines per poem is 40 and the number of words per story is 600. You may enter by post or by e-mail but you'll need to download an entry form for the postal end and likewise see details for e-mail entries. Visit site for all details and read instructions! Good luck!.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

National Heritage Week/Tribal Drumming-Tara.

Tribal Spirit Drumming/Tara.
Two of the drummers tapping it out!

The Music Inside


Paid a flying visit to Tara yesterday for the above event where up to two hundred drummers gathered to launch Heritage Week in County Meath. Facilitated by John Bowker who is also a very fine singer, for anyone who managed to make it there either by accident or design it made for a very entertaining afternoon. Batteries running out in the camera I managed to snap a few photos and if you ever get the chance to get to one of these events, you'll really enjoy. Very powerful indeed!

Link to John at: or telephone 00353 (0) 65683 5736. 

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

War Anniversaries (3)

War Anniversaries/Songs and Poems (3)

Dunsany Wayside Cross
Ireland of 1914 was a mishmash of conflicting interests under the umbrella of Home Rule and the out break of  the war would prove divisive for many of them although tens of thousands would enlist on Redmond's call to arms. Some did so out of a sense of duty, others of necessity or just a simple taste for adventure or that it was expected of them but I would imagine that for most poverty was the driving influence and that if they were lucky enough to survive the horrors of the trenches then that's what they came back to and were forgotten. Some of those doing the most remembering today would have had little in common with them and if they lean in any direction now it is one of convenience or the fashion of the times. It has been said of 1916 that if they'd waited Home Rule was on the cards and you could argue that is how things turned out in everything but name. We swapped London for Brussels. The slant of it though before we went all euro was some version of what could be said to be establishment friendly and finding it's roots in those who were sheltering under those umbrellas in 1914. One of the most popular or familiar poems from that period would have to be Francis Ledwidge's "The Lament for Thomas MacDonagh"  in that it made its way into a number of schoolbooks and the others were kept safely out. But they're there and the ones that caught the public imagination  Some say that the  victors write history but a few poets.....

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Peoples Internet Radio (2)

Peoples Internet Radio (2)

Over there on the air waves James Linnane and Jimmy Hagan continue their poetic journey, with this week's guest, or should that be last week's, being the Canadian author Carolyne Van Der Meer. And very interesting too. Carolyne's book "Motherlode" was recently published and is available from the Wilfred Laurier University Press (here) . Wonder who they've got lined up for next week? James led off, and although in no way related to the interview, except in that they both deal with war or in some way with wartime experience his reading of the Proclamation (1916) made for a fair old intro. The show goes out at 9pm on a Saturday night and a link to the above and the podcasts or other interviews can be found if you  visit "Bookchat Corner" over to your right, or the station above
. A little alternative entertainment if you get tired of advertisements for ice cream and the cars you can't afford. Give a listen!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Bailieborough Poetry Festival 2014!

Bailieborough Poetry Festival 2014!

 Skirmish of the Writing Groups- Saturday 11th October at 5pm in Murtagh's Lounge, Main Street.

Kilmessan Village

"A unique event which will feature a selection of writing groups producing lively material in a light-hearted, competitive vein. A much sought-after and uniquely designed prize will be on offer to the most entertaining, innovative  and interesting team of the day. Teams can comprise of three or more members (blood subs not allowed). The format of the event to be decided at a later date.....Interested?????"

E-mail Paddy: 

So if you're interested in a poetic skirmish or an enjoyable evening the above may be just for you.. The photo is of Kilmessan Village but sure you'll allow for that. The hurling team is hanging in there and the camogie team is going for six in a row! 

Sunday, August 10, 2014

The Meath Writers' Circle (Meeting) August 2014!

The Meath Writers' Circle/August 2014!

Writers' Circle
About fourteen or fifteen turned out for the above meeting with a lively discussion on a number of items from events of one hundred years ago to present times. Two members have books about ready for publication with one at the proof reading stage and the other one should be ready later in the year. More info to follow on both in the coming weeks. Poems were read and stories told and the next meeting something different is planned! Have to enter a few poems in a competition or two. Keep the effort up and waiting for inspiration to strike!

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

War Anniversaries (2)

Songs and Poems!

St. Patrick Tara
Two of the most popular and indeed excellent ballads of the first world war were written by the Scottish/Australian singer-songwriter Eric Bogle (The Band Played Waltzing Matilda and The Green Fields of France) and are no celebration of anything that went on. Exhortations to pack up your troubles or it was a long way to anywhere, would I imagine have got little airtime from anyone who survived the horrors of the trenches and I wouldn't attempt them myself in a public house in 1919. But maybe I'm wrong. In this neck of the woods probably alien to the mindset and more at home in the Dublin drawing room or theatre hall. There may be very good war poems or songs written by others than Francis Ledwidge or Tom Kettle but most people wouldn't be familiar with them and the jingoistic ballads were consigned to the nostalgia set or to those who hadn't been there. Pleasant and all as they were.All our songs were sad! There is an anthology of war poems covering the period 1914 to 1945 "Earth Voices Whispering" an anthology of Irish War Poems by Gerald Dawe/Blackstaff Press but had to look up the info and yet to read. When you consider the number of Irish men who fought in the great war; where are the songs and poems? You could probably name a few but that's it. Hearts and minds! On the other side..... A subject to get back to. 

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Buffy Sainte-Marie - Universal Soldier

Still on the theme of war and looking around at what's going on in Gaza, Syria, Iraq, Libya, the Ukraine, South Sudan, the Congo, Somalia and a few others I might have forgotten, as Mick Sheils said, Try Talking! Anyway here's Buffy and her take on the whole thing. With thanks to the person who posted!