Friday, December 31, 2010

Eileen Keane on the Radio

This weekend the first Sunday Scrapper in a very new new year is going to be the lovely Eileen Keane. I first spotted Eileen at a 7 Towers reading in Chapters book shop and loved her style, I hope you will enjoy it too.

Eileen is a visual artist and writer, originally from Athleague, Co. Roscommon, now living in Newbridge, Co. Kildare. Taught art and English at second level for many years but currently devoting herself fulltime to creative work.
She began to write seriously in 2003 and in 2004 her first short story ‘No More Flowers’ won the Cecil Day Lewis prize for fiction.
In 2009 her short story ‘Woman walking On Nassau Street’ was selected for a Pilot project as part of the Kildare arts service Literary programme to record, for broadcast, a series of new short stories by Kildare born and/or Kildare based writers.
She is a member of Clane Writer’s Group. She is currently involved in a collaborative project between the Leinster print studio and the Regional print centre, Yale College, Wrexham. This project entitled 'Le Cheile' (lecheileprintproject.blogspot.com), has seen Welsh and Irish artists collaborate on an exploration of the diversity and connections between Wales and Ireland.

Eileen is taking the theme of Visual Arts and Writing as our starting point for what'll hopefully be an inspiring new year for us all.
You'll catch us on Liffey Sound - link on the right there - live at 4pm on Sunday (9pm in Karachi) or find us soon afterwards on the Sunday Scrapbook.

Hope you all find yourselves something nice to do this evening and that next year will bring you all whatever you are hoping for, or failing that - marshmallows.

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Strange Days

I'm holding the fort this weather at the place that's normally filled with happy go lucky workers merrily going about the business they are employed to do.
It's odd being in on my own. I didn't draw the short straw, just wanted to be in to save on holidays to use them at a time of my choosing - namely at the end of my employment here to give me the time to move house and settle with Husband, Dog, Fishes and Potted Plant at the other end of the country (more about that soon - it's a scary but exciting change... will mean lots of things'll have to end - like the radio show etc, but it'll mean lots of new beginnings too)
Anyway, it has been quiet, apart from the odd thing, and means in general I get lots more done than usual.
It's not located in the most richest part of the world though, and yesterday there were gangs of kids roaming around with sticks. This is what they do here for amusement - instead of going to the Gym or the debating society ball or whatever other kids on holidays do, anyway it's a little unnerving when you're on your own and they're walking towards your car outside - ie your only means of escape. But sure they walked on when they saw me looking threateningly out at them.
I like to think I've saved the company from a broken window. It's the least I could do.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

A Poem which attempts to dissuade you from bringing your Owl to the Cinema

So I missed the bus again this week, can't keep on top of things at all amidst all the festivities, here's my weekly offering of sage wisdom at least, to try and help ye on ye're way...


A Poem which attempts to dissuade you from bringing your Owl to the Cinema
.
Don't bring your owl to the cinema house
Inclusion is something I'd mostly espouse
But he'd spend all the time combing dark for a mouse
Feeling round with his mean filoplumes
.
He'd spill all the popcorn on floors made of dralon
and mess up your hair so you'd soon need a salon
all in his effort to spruce up his left talon
Oh he'd only disrupt all the rooms
.
He'd find Harry Potter far too disconcerting
As Snowy old Hedwig is always exerting
such charisma, your owl'd soon be asserting
"That's movies, all airbrushed!" - what glooms!
.
So better avoid it, you and your little hooter
Prove to him for once that you're no cold up-rooter
and you won't see the flicks, you're no nacho looter
No cinema for your Owl today

Friday, December 24, 2010

IPYPIASM still going strong right through the holidays

International Put Your Poem In a Shop Month is not just for Christmas - it's for the whole month of December, so there's loads more time to take part while you fight your way through the beginnings of the sales or simply try to remember what a normal grocery shopping trip used to consist of, now you don't have to worry whether you have the exact sherry that Auntie Desdemona likes to drink, nor do you need that large box of tayto.

This just in - Peter Goulding has an inspirational little number up beside some slabs of Coca Cola!! - click here for the full story


Emerging Writer got a few real gems up in the Supermarket yesterday, head on over to her blog here to find out exactly what is written on these cards

To cheer those with Colds and Flu


To add some sweetness to a lemony drink


To warm up the cold fruit section


To add some real glamour to the poetically named shampoos and gels area.

Next head over here to welcome and congratulate our latest IPYPIASM placer - a wonderful blogger named Hope is bringing Joy to the cleaning section of stores in the US of A - our third American friend to join in. Do click over to read the heart warming sentiment on her card - something some lucky someone will no doubt pick up and treasure as one of their sweetest gifts of the season!



Get on out there now folks - and don't forget to tune in to the Sunday Scrapbook Xmas Special this weekend, perhaps play it on your head phones while placing your next poem, it'll give you courage - more details on that below.

Christmas Special on the Radio

This weekend you'd think I'd have taken the Sunday off, it being the day after the Christmas before, but no Radio lovers, I knew you'd never forgive me for leaving you alone on such a day, so instead I'm working twice as hard, after those lovelies in Liffey Sound offered me not one, but two hours of power on the radio.
I'm bringing back in some of the light hearted writers to reread their delicious work (including the likes of Oubliette, Joan Power, Fintan O'Higgins, Anamaria Crowe Serrano, Peter Goulding - and many more), well worth a listen, and I'll also be joined by Blathnaid Nolan who'll battle the snow to share some of her favourite Christmas reads.

So - if you want to join the people of Lucan land for two hours of fun and frolics, do drop by any time between 4 & 6 pm - this Sunday on 96.4fm - listen live on the Liffey Sound link on the right.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

The Book List

So here's what my little brain has been feeding on over the past 12 months

Again this year I'll just put in bold what you absolutely can't afford to miss, ie if you read nothing else next year read these - for the sake of your soul!

The Dead Fish Museum - Charles D'Ambrosio - short story collection - bought it because of a rave review - some gems, a v different style

The Name of the Rose - Umberto Eco - this guy is the original Dan Browne - a good read as monk murder mysteries go, prob a little slow for some tastes

Let the Great World Spin - Colum McCann - adored the writing in this, felt a bit like a collection of short stories rather than one novel, but enjoyable all the same (Colum will be thrilled to hear I said so, I'm sure)

Hard Boiled Wonderland at the end of the World - Haruki Murakami - the usual Haruki booky, it's all about the journey with him, I do like his stuff alot

The Leave Taking - John McGahern - great read by a very talented writer

The Pornographer - John McGahern - wolfed through this and loved it

Davey Byrne's Short Stories - in between feelings on some of the stories but Foster was a good winner of the 25 K

Dogs and Wolves - Irene Nemirovsky - really interesting - told with a certain distance yet the end effect was very impactful feeling.

The Piano Shop on the Left Bank - Thad Carhart - if you love pianos and piano tuners this is a warming one. If not, you could live without it.

The Castle - Franz Kafka - glad I got around to this - a bit of a trawl - you always feel like you're suffering along with the characters - but well worth it

Metroland - Julian Barnes - not massively touched by this one

The House in Paris - Elizabeth Bowen - Great dramatic story - very well told - though it takes 60 pages to really get going.

Capital Sins - Peter Cunningham - who guested on my show - all about Celtic Tiger Greed etc

Skippy Dies - Paul Murray - 660 pages that keep moving, enlightening, and entertaining - a joy.

What was lost - Catherine O Flynn - this is the kind of book I might end up reading twice because I have so completely forgotten the first read.

New Moon - Stephanie Meyer - does anyone else find Bella intensely irritating? Guilty Pleasure - saving the next one for next year.

Rashomon and other Stories - Ryunosuke Akwoguwa - maybe lost in translation, life was too short to even finish this.

Notes from the Underground - Theodore Dostyovsky - Fantastic. Short but brilliant.

Room - Emma Donoghue - well written, ambitious, pacey in parts, ultimately the characters don't stay long after reading.

Armadale - Wilkie Collins - Great book - takes 200 pages to get going though.

No one belongs here more than you - Miranda July - extremely energetic and interesting short stories, enjoyed them alot.

His name is Rebecca - Rebecca De Havalland and Evelyn Walsh - really well told and an amazing story, a book well worth reading.

Bad Science - Ben Goldacre - Bad book, full of repetition and moaniness - ear candles being the only thing worth hearing about

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

A Poem which attempts to dissuade you from bringing your Aye Aye to McDonald's

At Kat's request I had a lot of googling and wikipedia looking up to get things that made sense and rhymed for this one...
Consider it your Christmas Present!!!

.
A Poem which attempts to dissuade you from bringing your Aye Aye to McDonald's
.
Don't bring your Aye Aye to McDonald's
No matter how he fondly fondled
your hands, your hair, or how he has hondled*
he's still for that place so unsuitable
.
You know yourself this fiendish rogue'll
only be scoffing the big macs, his brogue'll
spellbind the poor servers, can't you just see him ogle
the menu, list' my theory's most mootable
.
For wee pointing Monkeys are way way too creepy
they'll want coffee mc flurries and claim that they're sleepy
so forget it, you know he'd leave you all weepy
as Ronald would find him out-bootable
.
And don't forget that this guy has got him a sorta
bad name as the type that'd puncture an aorta
so unless you want a visit from the Goddess called Morta
No McDonald's for your Aye-Aye today
.
* this is really a word, it means to haggle.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

New Fictional International Story Competition

From the Margaret Fuzz dedication website.

"Margaret Fuzz was a tryer - a mediocre writer with questionable levels of talent, but huge attention to detail and enthusiasm when it came to entering competitions. Her entry cheques never bounced and she was known to all competition judges as one of the best for adhering to submission guidelines - she never won anything - the closest she came was with this piece of flash fiction - which will illustrate how far from ever winning anything she really was:

I dreamed I was a fish, and then I dreamt I couldn't swim, and then I woke up in a lather of sweat.


Entry Guidelines:

Competition is open to all male writers who have 12 or more pairs of shoes, and female writers who have hair long enough to plait.
The story must be exactly 1054 words long, with 3 words in the title (with no more than 7 vowels in those 3 words)
The entry should be double spaced, except for page two which should contain 5 paragraphs which alternate between single and double spaced-ness.
The word Orange should appear 5 times in the story - each time in a completely different context.
You must include 5 main characters and let us know their star-signs which should also be made relevant to the pace of the story but not the plot.

Send entries to MargaretFuzz@yahoo.gmail.com - along with details of where you plan to leave the prize money in a plastic bag for the organisers to pick up"

Sounds like an interesting one!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Ticket for Weaver's Star bus

See Weaver's wonderful prompt over here, deceptively simple

Here's my ticket



Coast on a Summer’s night

And once, the sky was so low down

we almost heard the stars

the further out, the more they were – fanned rough up on the ceiling

of everywhere there was – and they went

giggling on their way - scraped loose on jagged mountains

as they rushed fast, ignoring us, those gaps in black

so cold for all their fire.

.

Sand land was kind, it gave us shelter in a bed of marram,

safe from a wind that bit with bitter lemon thin cut edges

our view from there - forever lights

strange twinkling from the past – with no nostalgia, no details,

their secrets frozen clasped.








Saturday, December 18, 2010

Nous Sommes Arriveé!

NanU - that wonderful Scientist and cat lover has brought "International Put Your Poem In A Shop Month" comprehensively to the people and poetry lovers of France!

Here's her lovely poem in a coat
A particularly dangereux placement next to a coffee maker
Near the Rugby merchandise
Beside some shoes/ choux


And seasonally with some Santa's

NanU's dramatic real life true story about the poetry placements can be found here. And the mysterious words of the really lovely poem that she placed out there is roundabouts here.

Don't forget to check earlier posts for more USA, Irish and Scottish poems in shops!!!!

Warms the cockles of my little heart it does.

Further inroads in America for IPYPIASM


Dead Acorn has followed up his early excursion to a high tech modern appliance shop, with another visit - this time to a lumber yard type place in a post modernist statement about the death of our woodlands to make planks of wood v's the living poet who still grows and brings new creations into the world despite calling himself dead. Flying the flag for the U S of A.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Hugh O'Donnell on the Radio

This Sunday we have the thoughtful and thought-provoking Hugh O'Donnell providing us with the road map on the next leg of the Sunday Scrapbook journey. His theme is Poetry under the Neon.

Hugh O'Donnell's first collection, Roman Pines At Berkley, appeared from Salmon Publishing in 1990. He has contributed to RTÉ Radio One's, Sunday Miscellany and short-listed for the Francis MacManus Short Story Competition. In 1998, he received a bursary from Laois County Council to spend some time at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre, Annaghmakerrig. In 2006 he graduated with an MS in Ecology and Religion from the University of Wales (Lampeter) out of which grew Eucharist and the Lliving Earth (Columbia, 2007), a book of ecological theology. He lives with the Salesian community in Dublin city where he minsters in the local parish. He will sometimes sign his emails Hu, after he gets to know you a little bit.

Hugh's poetry is well worth a listen if you haven't seen it before, and I'm sure everyone will enjoy his engaging and philosophical conversation as much as I do.

He's on stage at 4pm (10am in Winnipeg), on Liffey Sound - link on the right - or toon into 96.4 fm. The recording should be up on the archive from Tuesday.

See below for more IPYPIASM progress from the Stammering Poet Stable

A Blizzard of poems in shops from the Stammering Poet

Click here for a full report from the Dublin 15 brigade from a glorious expedition to Dublin 15.
Here's the all important evidence
Poems near books
Near Nintendo
near music (country of course)


near toys (or aliens - whatever you'd like to think)

As I say - close up and more impressive evidence will be found at the Stammering Poet's blog
Get over there and congratulate him!!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Back on track in Eire - IPYPIASM racks up 3 more successes?(ish)







Finally got out to the shops again, as promised - this time with camera and poems... The shops were bedlam, but I'm still a complete wooss at this. Anyway - see below what I managed to get done.
Here they are -
I'm very sorry this is turned sideways - you will have to hope that you have a flexible neck - or else read it here... "You cannot rest your weary head, it's not your home, it's not your bed, imaginations leaves you free, to dream of it, so dream with me!!!"
It is there on the bedspread I promise - just well camoflaged - this will enable it to last longer

Might as well type em all out for those with weak vision, or who can't read my scribble "Can't buy me love so buy the latest load of junk, invest in greatest insincere stupendous lyrics, and vids defying laws of physics"
I was very happy to be able to place this one in my own section in the store - ie under the title Various.



And the final one "The place is thronged with thaw freed shoppers, some ads tell fibs, some ads tell whoppers, so read the small print before you sign, be careful in the spendy time" I had hoped to get it next to some kind of big electrical appliance, that people might have to fill out paperwork for - in terms of guarantees etc, but the shop was too tidy, so I had to settle for putting it beside a Billy Connolly DVD... as follows:



See more Scottish placements in the lower post - the unstoppable force that is Titus.

Also a debut is afoot in France - click here for NanU's beautiful poem - soon to hit a French shop near you, (if you live near one of the French shops that she happens to place them in)

This woman has no fear

Titus is off again, proving that there is something special in the water in Scotland - she's a one woman epidemic with two more poems in shops, after the trauma of blizzards and slides - read all about it over here....

International Put your poem in shop month - midterm report


Student: IPYPIASM

Term: Dec 2010

Subjects:
America - started off extremely well, but has slackened off a bit despite early promises.
Scotland - this is IPYPIASM's spiritual home this year - she has excelled in all sorts of endeavours in this area and consistently continues to do so.
Ireland - Should be doing alot better here - there is a huge need to pull her socks up in an area that should be her heartland. Again this year there have been unproven scoundrel like claims of progress being made with no back up to back it up...
Canada - Again a very promising start here, which broke new territory for the term, but needs a little more focus to continue the good work.
Rest of World - Not sure whether it's pure lethargy or lack of knowledge but IPYPIASM has absolutely failed to make an ounce of progress in this area for the term in question - most dissappointing.

Overall Summery: IPYPIASM could do so well if supported more at home especially. There are another 15 days of term left to get up to speed.

See how one little dog is keeping the ball rolling over here

I would like to tell you eager blog watchers that by midnight tonight Irish time, I hereby promise to try and get another few poems into shops, to hell with the danger, I know no fear, I have to get em out before the snow comes back!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

A Poem which attempts to dissuade you from bringing your hairy fly to the launderette

It's still not in a shop, but it is a poem at least. Hope all hairy fly owners are listening up!

A Poem which attempts to dissuade you from bringing your hairy fly to the launderette

Don't bring your hairy fly to the launderette
Twould be worse than the time that he came to the vet
Oh he doesn't like soap sudz, can't stand getting wet
Trust me, leave home this diptera terrible

He'd regress to a larva, would cause quite a mess
Would pick threads off the linens and wouldn't confess
Would cause all sorts of mayhem, both some you could guess
and some that would be un-infer-able

And if they start ironing he'd lose his antennae
Oh, his problems would be too vast, and so many
He'd have to walk on the ground not float like Pat Kenny
for his wings would get pressed, how unbearable!

Tell your fly, better stay home washing his hairs
in the normal fly way, with his legs, and who cares
he can sit instead on a tray of eclairs
No Launderette for your hairy fly today

Monday, December 13, 2010

It's not a poem and it's not in a shop


but it's still kinda fun


don't forget the dogs singing launch tonight

If you're down the Country next Weekend...

You should really get along to this.

In Association with Birr Library, Offaly Arts cordially invite you to the launch of

From Bone to Blossom, an anthology

of poetry and pen and ink drawings
by Eileen Casey and Emma Barone.

The Launch will take place at Birr Library
on Saturday 18th December at 11 am.

From Bone to Blossom is supported by Offaly Arts, Alternative
Entertainments and South Dublin Arts.
The publication will be launched by Artist and Writer Rosalind Fanning.
Tea and coffee will be served. Everyone Welcome.
RSVP to 057-9346800

The book looks beautiful (you'll have to take my word on that, I can't seem to upload the picture) and Eileen's work is always worth absorbing.

UPDATE: The cover can now be seen on 120 socks' blog, technowunderkind that she is

Sunday, December 12, 2010

On Titus's poetry bus

This week Titus gave us two soul searching and interesting prompts which can be found here
along with other ticket holders.

Mine's based on the first, but it came out a bit obscure....

Hands Free

I never touched a thing

no part that was I then is left

yet I can be felt

wet memories make up a breathing dog

couch dozing lightly

remembrances from chickens, earth and fields

amazing things can happen in the dark

Friday, December 10, 2010

Jessie Lendennie on the Radio

This week it's a world of Dogs in Blogland, and the Sunday Scrapbook will be taking the theme of "Dogs Singing"

We are being joined by Jessie Lendennie for a tour of all things Canine and talking about her most recent project - an anthology by, for and about dogs of all shapes and sizes. You'll find more on the anthology itself over here. The book is a hugely impressive achievement with hundreds of great poems by a really varied group of writers, and is THE perfect present for the dog lover in your life. The Dublin launch of this juicy little number will take place next Tuesday night:
"Poetry Ireland in association with Salmon Poetry presents the launch of Dogs Singing: A Tribute Anthology, edited by Jessie Lendennie, launched by Sharon Ní Bheoláin.
Dogs (on leads) are welcome to attend!
Venue: Unitarian Church, 112 St Stephen’s Green West, D2
Time: 7:30pm "


Here's a little more about our guide.
Jessie Lendennie is founder and Managing Director of Salmon Poetry Ltd (http://salmonpoetry.com). Since 1981 she has commissioned, edited and published over three hundred books and twenty-six issues of The Salmon International Literary Journal. Salmon is known for its ground-breaking poetry, in particular that of Irish women poets at a time when the poetry of women was generally being ignored. Salmon is also know for its international range having a substantial list of American, British and Canadian poets.


Jessie, a native of Arkansas, U.S.A., came to Ireland in 1981, after eleven years in London, England. She completed third level education at King's College, London, obtaining a B.A. Honours degree in Philosophy, with a Post Graduate degree in Education. She taught for two years in London, and two years at the Regional Technical College, Galway (now Galway Mayo Institute of Technology).


Her own poetry was first published during her college days in London and she worked for two years with the Poetry Society during which time she developed an interest in publishing.


In 1988 her book, a prose poem entitled 'Daughter', was published, followed in 1990 by 'The Salmon Guide to Poetry Publishing' and in 1992 by 'The Salmon Guide to Creative Writing in Ireland'. A new edition of Daughter, with added poems, was published in 2001, and reprinted in 2003. In 2007 she compiled and edited 'Salmon: A Journey in Poetry, 1981-2007',which includes poems from poets published by Salmon during those years. In 2009 she compiled and edited 'Poetry: Reading it, Writing It, Publishing It', which includes essays from poets and publishers on the art of poetry and the realities of the marketplace.


She has given numerous workshops, lectures and writing courses in Ireland and abroad, including Yale University; Rutgers University; The Irish Embassy, Washington D.C; The University of Alaska, Fairbanks and Anchorage; MIT, Boston; The Loft, Minneapolis, MN; Café Teatre, Copenhagen, Denmark, the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, and Canton University, NY.

So do join us, you know you want to, 4pm as always, Liffey Sound as always, updated on archive after as always. It should be fab!!!!!!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

What I've been doing when I should have been putting poems in shops



For who can resist the allure of Double Dream Hands?

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

A Poem which attempts to dissuade you from bringing your Thorny Oyster to Next

There's no cuts on Wednesday fun here at Various Cushions land, though it's a little slower off the mark than usual - this week's poem is particularly heart felt and difficult to read. I'm only giving a warning in case Mollusc lovers would prefer to sit down before reading...

A Poem which attempts to dissuade you from bringing your Thorny Oyster to Next

Don't bring your Thorny Oysters to Next
For if you do, you'll end up vexed
They're far too slimy, too over-sexed
Too calcified for high fashion

You'll find nothing there to dress your bivalves
3/4 length pants go way past their calves
the top and the bottoms are too big for both halves
You'd be in for a molluscy ear bashin

You mightn't usually be an advice heeder
but this once try to tame this colorless bleeder
Do you need to hear it from a proper news reader?
Anne Doyle shares my take, there's no clashin

No, don't take a chance with this pearly seductor
he'd laugh at the scallop tops, quite the destructor
of confidence, don't let him work that adductor
No Next for your Thorny Oyster today

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

TFE's Forst IPYPIASM poem for this month


Get on over to TFE's blog for a great description of the spirit of International put your poem in a shop month. Not only is he the fantasmic originator of the Poetry Bus, and a renowned masked performance poet, he also claims to have put up a poem in a shop, and has a lovely picture of said poem on his blog, but no picture of it in the shop, but he has a very plausable reason for why not, so I believe him anyway, don't know about you...

It's only fair! IPYPIASM goes Festive

Only 18 days to Christmas, and Titus has brought IPYPIASM to a festive fair in Scotland.
Putting the rest of us to shame really, this is her third outing, with another belter of a poem

Call over here for the full Christmas Spread!!! Awe inspiring!!

My excuse for not getting to more shops? It took me 1.5 hours to get 4.5 miles to work today, so I was already late enough without stopping off along the way. (Plus I forgot my camera) BUT I will get out again, promise.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Poetry Bus - inspired by a pub

This week Poetikat's instruction, as bus driver extraordinaire, was to take the name of a pub and write a witty and fun poem inspired by the title. Click here for the rest of the passengers.
I chose Nancy Spains in Cork, my fondest memory of pub life going back to the days of the late 90's spent there, a pub whose front was interestingly blackened and "distressed" in order to allow it to be part of the film "Angela's Ashes" and whose back side was burnt to the ground some years later.
So anyway, many's the happy (drunken) Sunday evening we passed there, and it's the only pub I was ever barred from, and it's also the only pub I ever sent a postcard to (not at the same time) - and the toilet doors were always well worth a read.

I decided to do some research - in order to write this hilarious witty poem. I knew the name was after a song... I've just found out however, that the song is classed as describing an emotional state known in Portugese and Galician as Saudade
"a somewhat melancholic feeling of incompleteness. It is related to think back situations of privation due to the absence of someone or something, to move away from a place or thing, or to the absence of a set of particular and desirable experiences and pleasures once lived"
Pretty sad right? I'm not sure I can write something that'll have ye on the floor laughing having just discovered this, so here goes something:

Nancy's

We had a complicated relationship
You saw me go from west coast coolers
to big bottles of cider
that'd tear the insides
if they weren't so tough

I fell off your tables
people fell onto me
friendships made in the haze
mice ran up the walls
and you played the best music

there'd be cartoons on
and a fire going
and every table held a spinning wheel
trees held the place up
and strangers made eyes

On my 21st birthday
Dad bought 90p pints*
for everyone in the snug at the back
my brother surprise tripped
home from US talking of new love
a girl now his wife

I daren't go back to you
for oh, how you've changed
and me, insides softened
- blurred memories stay


* the 90p pints were part of a beat the clock promotion - ie they were 90p till 8pm, then 1 pound till 9pm and then up to normal price, in case ye thought I was ancient or anything, cos I'm really not that ancient.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Alotta words in shops!!

The latest to join the avalanche of Poems in Shops (and to discover just how furtive leaving something in a shop and taking a picture of it can make you feel) as part of the international put your poem in a shop month is the fabulous Words A Day, click here to see the pictures full size and the actual words, for some reason the pictures stay small on this blog.


A Heart rending announcement on the notice-board

The words with the strawberries are below:


And a warning about the snow in amongst the custard creams


Remember all are welcome to join in, there's a whole lotta poems in shops already, but who will be next to take the initiative?!!!!

International Put your Poem in a Shop Month (finally) hits Ireland

At long last, the snow has cleared to an extent that has allowed for shop going, and camera carrying, and planning ahead. So I have finally got my act together with an excerpt from an old poem of mine finally finding its way onto a shelf of a shop.
It was tricky to do this without being noticed, I will warn ye - since only zombies and people with military training seem to be making it out to the shops in this weather.

Anyway, here it is... perfectly disguised as a public service announcement.

Don't forget the poems in shops are now in FOUR whole Countries worldwide,
and should soon sweep every village and town and workplace known to man. You don't want your local shop to be left out, do you? DO YOU???

And here's the close up, along with human finger for perspective...


The text for those too lazy to click on the pic to enlarge it is

Don't bring your horse to Tesco
He'll only let his mess go
The staff'll say "You'd best go"
When he scutters in the aisle

Look at the last few posts for other partakers tales

IPYPIASM hits Canada


"International Put Your Poem in a Shop Month" has arrived in Canada, thanks to the brilliant Poetikat, who is multitasking marvellously as this week's poetry bus driver also.

Go here for more about it!!


UPDATE!!!! Pics of the lovely looking pub in question are here. And see below the actual poem, up in the actual place!!


And see the American and Scottish partakers below

Friday, December 3, 2010

It's gone Transcontinental - IPYPIASM gets its big break stateside

Dead Acorn is not just a hilarious blogger, he is in fact a pioneer, a leader of humanity, and the trail-blazing first ever person to join in with IPYPIASM on that wonderful planet known as Americay..

He has risked life and limb to bring the joy of a little poem, to that most mysterious of settings...


It must surely be some kind of USA high tech kitchen appliance shop, I'm not sure, he only mentioned that he had to stop at a pub on the way there... read all about his adventures here



And a close up for our friends who like close ups.

What a hero. Who'll be next, I wonder, IPYPIASM fever is gripping the universe...

Don't forget to check out Titus below - the original IPYPIASMer of 2010

Titus is storming ahead....

She's an action woman of the highest order, a lady with determination, Titus has had another two placements of poems in shops, all before the rest of us have got off the starting blocks.


Beautiful pictures, and a really delightful looking shop. I haven't been in a shop since the month began, but just you wait, Monday at the latest, WATCH OUT for poems in shops in a shop near you.

In other news, snow has snowed away my guest for this week's Sunday Scrapbook which is a pity, he's going to be a cracker when we reschedule. Luckily there is the archive to play with, and I'm again going to put up a show from a past mystery guest. This time a very entertaining lady who still holds the cup for being my Dad's favourite guest of all time.

See yez on Sunday for the Bus, weather permitting.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

AND THEY'RE OFF!!!

Titus has launched IPYPIASM in Glasgow for us, in great style. And this is the first (but hopefully not the last) year that the month has begun its life outside of Ireland, well it is "International put your poem in a shop month" after all.
She has daringly placed some tasty poems in one Furniture and one Charity shop. Full details over here.
And here's the proof, but do visit her blog for the full story!
So Happy, it almost makes me forget the meany pants kids (big kids - 12 -15) who ganged up on me (a huge gang - like 20 or so), on my way home last night (I was walking, since traffic wasn't moving, since the snow was clogging everything), when they basically hopped on me, pulling at my tightly tied on pixie hat, and shoving snow into my poor frightened face even though I asked them nicely not to.... I was fine for a minute or two afterwards, then started crying like a baby walking up the street...
Luckily when I got to where the traffic was moving again Mr VC was at hand to come to my rescue. But it was fairly horrible. But if the while I think of IPYPIASM dear friend, all losses are restored and sorrows end!!!!!!!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

A Poem which attempts to dissuade you from bringing your Tree Frog to Bed, Bath and Beyond

This one was in part inspired by Picasso over at Elizabeth's blog - see that post here.


A Poem which attempts to dissuade you from bringing your Tree Frog to Bed, Bath and Beyond


Don't bring your Tree Frog to Bed, Bath and Beyond
Though he might say of that shop, he's rather fond
Don't believe him, no please do not be conned
His real motive is far more sinister

Tree Frogs dream from when they're little tadpoles
Of fulfilling a seriously villainous role
They're not to be trusted, oh, won't you be told!
He'll lie even more than a minister

"I just want some bath pearls" he'll tell you, straight-faced
Then he'll hop to the showers, hot water to waste
Sucky pads help him climb up, the whole place he'll have cased
And get you into trouble with him mister

No, sadly you can't trust this little amphibian
Tho his eyes look all genuine, voice purer than Rhydian
If he begs "Will you bring me" tell him "You must be kiddyin"
No Bed, Bath and Beyond for your Tree Frog today!


Don't forget today is officially the first day of IPYPIASM - see yesterday's post if you missed it. I will update as the poems get placed!!!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

IPYPIASM

Yes, it's that time of year again - "International Put Your Poem In A Shop Month" kicks off again tomorrow on it's third year out.
(God I've been blogging too long - aren't these crazes supposed to wear off after awhile?!)

The premise is this:

December is the month to spend time away from loved ones, stressed to the max, under artificial lighting, gratingly cheerful music mushing through your brain, counting your pennies in shops filled with sparkly shiny things that you cannot afford, fighting your way through the car parks, clashing trolleys with anyone who dares to stand in your way...
Why not this year, try and give something back to those wonderful places where we spend so much of our lives, longing for rubbish that will clutter up our homes and only make us worry that we will end up crazy and alone on a mountain of wrapping paper with no one left to talk to, and our insurance costs crushing our meagre remaining spirit.
So here's the plan: Take a poem, any poem, yours, or someone elses, just a poem that you love. Keep the poem short enough that someone can read it during the browsing process - 4 - 6 lines. Stick it up in a shop. Either on the noticeboard of the shop, as was the fashion in year one of this project, or on a shelf. This is the hard part - take a picture of your poem as it embarks on its new life inspiring the tired shoppers, brightening the lives of weary shop lifters and reluctant security staff. Let me know when you have the picture posted, so I can report to the eager IPYPIASM followers here as the action happens.
Good Luck Everyone - the last few years of intrepid poetry placement can be viewed here and here.

Monday, November 29, 2010

I have no news

No news is good news, apparently. Lots of stuff is cancelled because of snow. Dog still insists on two walks a day though, during which she does her best to pull us off our feet, sometimes succeeding, with me anyway. On the flip side she's now sometimes allowed on the couch to act as a cuddley luke warm water bottle with claws, that can ruin the couch, but also is a bit adorable.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Bug's poetry Bus


This week, the bus driver is none other than Dana Bug, you can click here to find the other passengers


She gave us three options to write about


  1. Now, you might not be a religious person, but I'm sure that even so you have wanted to argue with God (or Allah or the sun or your own super ego) in some manner. If you choose this prompt I'd like you to tell us about that argument.
  2. Write about the place you dream of living someday. Or if you're lucky enough to already live there write about home.
  3. Write about leafless trees.


Here's my ticket for the bus, it's a bit based on No. 2, but kind of a negative version, a bit more about where I don't want to be than where I do.... With thanks to Shakespeare for the last two lines, he was a generous type, and I'm sure he's not averse to sharing...


Untitled Non-Sonnet


I want to believe the tin voices of reason

sweat to unheave from the choice of disease n'

swim touching the eaves of a flooded disaster

a cruelty of thorns, a rumour of laughter

hope grits the cold roads and we're flying down fast

thick fog chaos holds, blinding, crashing at last

but if the while I think of thee dear friend

All losses are restored and sorrows end

Friday, November 26, 2010

Jennifer O'Brien on the Radio

This weekend our guest on the Scrapbook is the fabulous Jennifer O'Brien, hailing from Co Tipp originally, Jennifer has worked at TV3 and The Longford News before joining the Irish Sun 3 years ago, 1 year into her job there she was made Showbiz correspondent and has been in charge of all things showbiz ever since. She is also official biographer for our very own most famous of Lucan-landers Jedward. The book, called "Jedward: Our Story" has beat Justin Beiber and Cheryl Cole's book sales in HMV Dublin.
She's doing a show on the theme of "The Phenomenon of Celebrity" - with a special focus on the lads themselves.
Hope you can join us then, 4pm (1pm in Greenland) on Sunday, Liffey Sound, 96.4 fm or link on the right should work. And if you can't make that time, you can catch up after wards on the aul Radio Archive - http://sundayscrapbook.blogspot.com There's another 63 other shows over there too, should the fancy grab you to have a listen.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

By request of Swiss

Below is a poem by Brian Lynch. I was lucky enough to have him as a guest on the Sunday Scrapbook two week's back. This is a beautiful poem and one that Swiss particularly liked the sound of during the show, so I'm posting it with Brian's kind permission.

First Nightmare

I drop my work and hurtle up the stairs
Because I hear her crying in a way
She’s never cried before, a sudden spray
Of otherwordly screams, caught unawares
By – nothing worse – the first of her nightmares.
She’s new to this, I think, and cannot say
What she has learned, that there is hell to pay,
And from its depths a hopeless demon stares.
While fast asleep and safe, she felt the ground
Beneath her slip, and now she’s standing up
Behind the bars that keep her in the cot.
I lift her out. She throws her arms around
My neck and holds on tighter than a cup
Its handle, or a strangling child the knot.
How strange! And stranger still to realise
She doesn’t know my name. She isn’t mine.
I could be any mirrored ghost with eyes
Whose gaze she’s seen, whose weight she’s borne before.
I carry her, as water carries wine.
She is the miracle I’m looking for,
But what she is I am the spectre of.
There is no she. That she is you, poor Clare,
And you, some day, will die, and not of love.
The thought of that, it drowns me in despair.
I clutch you like a straw and start to hate
The floating life that you were born to lose.
How lourd death is. But then you press your cheek
Against my own and it’s both warm and cold,
And for this once I understand our weight,
As downy as the skylight’s evening blues,
And how these attic walls, like me, grown weak,
Can bear it too. One day – I hope you’re old
For both our sakes – you’ll wake and find I’ve gone
Back down the stairs and can’t come up again,
But when that happens, do remember this:
That on the night when you first felt the pain
Of other-dread, which can’t be woken from,
You had a father’s, I a daughter’s, kiss,
A functional emotion that lives on.

By Brian Lynch

Check out Brian's first Novel - The Winner of Sorrow - on the life of the poet William Cowper - it's definitely on my wishlist for Santa!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

A Poem which attempts to dissuade you from bringing your Camel to Specsavers

I know, in this day and age, it's hard being a Camel owner, trying to guess the rights and wrongs of their care, afterall - they don't come with a manual - here is a small piece of advice, for those who are seeking it.


A Poem which attempts to dissuade you from bringing your Camel to Specsavers


Don't bring your camel to spec savers

You know he's not the best behaver

He's a diva, this ungulate, attention craver

He spits in the eye of opticians

.

His hooves are no good for handling contacts

He frowns at the sunglasses, chomps like a mastax

left loose on a rotifiers lunch, always detracts

from the mood in that home of good vision

.

He won't like the opthalmascope, it'll soon make him grump

He'll complain of the tonometer, call the whole place a dump

And forgive the pun here, but he will get the hump

He'll cause dents in the fence with allision

.

Your sweet dromedary wouldn't say "This is class"

engulfed not in sand, but with frameworks of glass

So better leave him at home, leave his whole biomass

No Specsavers for your Camel today

Monday, November 22, 2010

New People and Statistics

Over the past month the number of neices and nephews in my life have doubled.
First of all - on the third of the month - the nephew count was doubled by the arrival of a new little Galwegian man, who also lifted the total no. of nieces and nephews by 33% to 1/4 above where they had previously been.
More recently, in Boston, last Friday - two more new people have arrived - within two minutes of each other - increasing the overall total by a further 50% and adding both to the neice and the nephew count by another 33% each.
It's crazy.
New people, who I haven't even met yet, but who are going to be important to me for the simple reason of who happened to have made them. I'm even being appointed fairy godmother of one of the Bostonians, so that'll be interesting.
New people are great cos they make me feel all superior with the way I can open my eyes at will, and they haven't had time to annoy anyone yet either, so that also goes in their favour. Imagine never having annoyed anyone? Not many people can claim that (least of all myself - I'm probably annoying people as I type) (this kind of introspective blog post does annoy some people) (at least so I've heard) (it's not funny or clever) (but babies are funny and cute and clever in their own way by smiling at us so we love them whether they actually find our random burbles amusing or not)
Anyways - that's the happy news of growth, improvement and many long and happy hours to come.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

The Enchanted Bus of life

This week's tough but straight forward bus challenge was to write

"Poems that address your existence on this earth. Good, bad, or indifferent, tell us something, anything, about your life here." from the wonderful Enchanted Oak - visit her here for further bus Passengers

Here's what I got:

Reaching


Driven to seek out comforts
I steal to the cosiest spot of a messy room
Crave a smile through gloom
Want to see bright in all
and feel
Feel all there is
All textures, temperatures, tastes, triumphs, terrors
Kiss every face, wear every kind of lace there is
bootleg, dead queen, liquorice,
Dream of crazy races, paces, lifetimes in alien lands
and understand
the canned laughter, the over planned,
the fake wasted grandiose delinquent strands will grow out their bleach some day
Give way to wavy beaches, stony, grey – but real and speaking wisdom
Laughing back the spray onto the shore
and more

Friday, November 19, 2010

Harry Clarke's Stained Glass on the Radio

This weekend I will have a jam packed studio with Lucy Costigan, Raymond McGovern, Theresa Cullen and Micheal Cullen all joining me in the studio. They have all been embarking over the past two years on a fantastic exploration of the work of Harry Clarke, one of Ireland's artistic heroes. This has culminated in a book, film and website documenting their work and their discoveries on his work.

A little about the star of the show:
Harry Clarke (1889-1931) created spectacular stained-glass windows for churches
and private patrons in Ireland, England, the United States and Australia. Born in
Dublin in 1889, Clarke developed a unique style and technique in stained glass that
combined deep rich colours with beautiful, elongated figures that exuded poise and
grace. His deep blues and ruby reds became the hallmark of his work. Clarke is
considered to rank among the masters of stained glass, with Tiffany, Burne-Jones and
the medieval colourists.
You'll find examples of his work over on their website http://www.harryclarke.net/
Here us all talking live about this marvellous adventure on Liffey Sound, this Sunday, at 4pm. (5am in Alaska)

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Silliness surrounding elephants

Yesterday's poem reminded me of some age old questions and answers

such as

How do you kill a blue elephant?
Shoot him with a blue elephant gun

How do you kill a red elephant?
Leave him out in the cold till he turns blue, then shoot him with a blue elephant gun

How do you kill a green elephant?
Heat him up till he turns red, then leave him out in the cold till he turns blue, then shoot him with a blue elephant gun

How do you kill a yellow elephant?
Tell him about environmental issues till he turns green, then heat him up till he turns red, then leave him out in the cold till he turns blue, then shoot him with a blue elephant gun

How do you kill a pink elephant?
There's no such thing as a pink elephant

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

A Poem which attempts to dissuade you from bringing your Elephant to the Dáil

A word of warning.....


A Poem which attempts to dissuade you from bringing your Elephant to the Dáil


Don't bring your Elephant to the Dáil

I don't care if he likes Labour, Greens, or Fianna Fáil,

He wouldn't fit in there at all, 't all, at all

No he wouldn't fit in the Oireachtas


He'd be sure to annoy the poor aul Cheann Chomhairle

He wouldn't sit still, go to sleep, like them all, yeah

He'd be sure to vote wrong, then have to call ye

And say, "We did our best and they mocked us"


Yes, you'll soon find your Ivory toothed friend

is prone to the Royal "we" which no end

annoys all the politicians, who tend

to find trunks more inclined to get blocked, thus


There'd be so many problems, no bail out could solve

so pack him his trunks, tell him better evolve

get on with his life, cos you won't be involved

No Dáil for your elephant today

Losing one

Well, I've lost a follower, I've no idea who it was, but my 52 strong army of fans has reduced to 51. Never mind. They won't ever read this, but it's very possible that they have too much sympathy with the meany-pants quitter birds of last week's fame.

They'll also never know about the fabulous book of myths launching this week in Tallaght's fabby doo arts centre - Rua Red, Wednesday at 7pm.

Writers of the South Dublin County persuasion were asked by the brilliant Eileen Casey to contribute a new myth set within the area. It's a wonderful little book with fantastic flights of fancy, explanations of local places, names etc, and some of the writers will be reading from their work on the night.

My myth explains how Citywest got its name and why golf is still played there to this day.
It was a great and fun project to take part in, and one I think could be very easily and successfully transferred to other places....

Anyways - see ye there (except for the meany-pants quitter bird lover)