Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Our ambitious gardener

Here's herself finally getting to grips with the lawn

... and they say dogs are intelligent - but this took her half the summer to figure out!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

A Poem which attempts to Dissuade you from bringing your Jellyfish to Homebase

Another in the series of poems which attempt to dissuade you from bringing various forms of living things to various places of business. I'm posting a day earlier than normal because I'm away on a mad adventure for the rest of the week and well into next week and all the rest of this weeks' posts will actually be prewritten things that are going to be posted up at scheduled times even though I won't be here to see your reactions, ain't technology mad tho!
This weeks' effort was prompted by Emerging Writer's comment on her Diva's at the Body & Soul Festival post...

A Poem which attempts to dissuade you from bringing your Jellyfish to Homebase

Don't bring your jellyfish to Homebase
I don't care if he asks you with exquisite grace
or threatens to sting you, I don't want to see your face
with him tucked under your arm there.

Don't let him convince you he's that fastidious
and wants a new shower curtain less hideous
than what you have, he's not even amphibious
which means he'll feel fairly alarmed there

Yes homebase is no place for your boneless wonder
he'd be sure to tear the displays all asunder
while searching for aquarium toys, what a blunder
it'd be, he'd lose every charm there

So sit him down and rub his belly
Tell him it's not just because he's smelly
there's just too many sharp things there for a jelly
No homebase for your jellyfish today

Monday, June 28, 2010

Soccer and Writing

A theory ....

Recently I've heard football commentators bemoaning the fact that really great footballers come from the streets, they play for the love of it, and they practise endlessly, discovering their flair through the long hours of ball against the wall and then with others, and the commentator was moaning that there was less and less of that magic happening with the professionalisation of the training process, the corporate approach. Writing doesn't physically hurt as much as football, especially at its worst (I have had my moments of - indoor soccer, muscle pulled or god forbid getting in the way of a fast moving ball - agony, so I know what I'm talking about here), but I guess there could be some parallels.
Writing for a market is a craft and a skill, but writing for the joy of it, is surely more exciting/ intoxicating, more likely to result in something unique... Trying to write for the right balance of motivations is tricky.
You have to think about your own game first, play as if it's the world cup every time, even when it's just a kickabout among friends, don't be crying on the pitch for a genuine tackle, or let a wide prevent you from shooting again, don't spend more time watching others and reading the analysis of other games than you spend honing your own skills, but do learn from others when you can. Just think about the moment at hand, you're only as good as your last sentance, well placed word, whatever..... Stop reading this, this instant and feckin get on with it!!!!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

On the Pixie Poetry Bus

So this week we were directed by Don't feed the Pixies to take inspiration from a sign for a place in your locality. About 3 minutes away from where I live is a place called Adamstown - It's the first planned town in Ireland since 1982. It was greatly praised in the early days of its planning for the fact that it was actually being planned - a housing development for up to 25,000 people and they were going to put schools and shops in etc. The schools are up and running there now. The place isn't as full as it would be if it weren't for the whole R-word though, and it featured on a recent TV show here about ghost estates mentioning how certain play areas that were planned and promised haven't been delivered there yet.

Anyway - mine's below - other bussers can be found here....

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Barbara Smith on the Radio

This weekend I am delighted to be welcoming my colleague in Divaness to the Sunday Scrapbook, Barbara Smith is taking on the the theme of "A Woman's View"
Barbara holds an MA in English (Creative Writing) from Queen’s University, Belfast, 2008. Kairos, her debut poetry collection was published in 2007 by Doghouse Books. In 2009, she was awarded the Annie Deeny bursary residency at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre for Artists & Writers; was a prize winner at Scotland’s Wigtown Poetry Competition and was shortlisted for the Poetry Business pamphlet completion. She has read with the Diva Collective, at Flatlake and the Electric Picnic.... and of course you'll also know her from her blog Barbara's Bleuggghh!!!!
You're invited to join us on Sunday, for full, in depth soccer and poetical analysis from a woman poet's point of view... at 4pm (that's 5pm in Paris) on Liffey Sound - link on the right there, or else we'll see ya whenever we see ya over at

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Poetikat's 80's day

Poetikat has asked us to remember the 80's as part of her Retro 80's blog day, also today is her Birthday - so Happy Birthday Kat!!!

Anyway, of course I can't remember the 80's personally, being so young and all, but I do have a handy eye witness account in the shape of my diary begun in the year of 1984 (when I was 5), however that diary is lost... it was a 5 year diary, and no doubt it's lurking somewhere, but in the absence of having the energy to look for it, I have found the one begun in 1989 when that first
one ran out (It was a 5 year diary, and I was fierce organised in those days)...

So 1989, what pearls of wisdom can be mined from its crusty shell? (real names changed to protect the people involved)

November 15th
"Today Ireland won a league against Malta. The score was 2 nil. The Malteze were throwing rocks at the Irish. The Berlin wall was knocked down lately. I got 12 books of tickets to sell for CASA today. On Home and Away today Carly wanted to go to bed with Andrew"

November 20th
"Today in school a girl bumped into a wall. We watched a prayer service about Nano Nagle the foundess of our school. Tomorrow we are getting a day off because of it. I'm going to the body shop for bath pearls"

November 27th
"Today is Monday, last Friday I went to Angela's to practise marbles and to write more of "Lines of Rymes" the poem book. On Saturday I went to my 7th lesson in French. I got a French magazine called bonjour. I was invited to a party and I was told about Mr Walsh's death on duty. Nothing much really"

November 28th
"Today I had PE, I scored one for our side. I went to Gerry Walsh's funeral rights with the school. The three daughters were crying. On Home and Away Steven found out about his uncle being burnt to death. His parents were already dead the same way."
So, in summary, the 80's were all about Home and Away for me. Nice to see poetry in evidence, as well as my trademark wondrous sensitivity...

I leave you with this one, my little bit of "art" from the 80's...

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

A Poem which attempts to dissuade you from bringing your Geranium to Boots

This week in the bewilderingly popular weekly series of "Poems which attempt to dissuade you from bringing your various animals to various places of commerce" I am taking a departure from the norm, and trying to convince you not to bring your *Geranium to # Boots - NOTES: *a Geranium is in fact a plant - not an animal (for the floratically faunatically challenged), # For those on the other side of the world Boots is a chemist on this side of the world that specialises in glossy beauty goods.
Anyway - by request of Don't Feed the Pixies - here it is...

A Poem which attempts to dissuade you from bringing your Geranium to Boots

Don't bring your Geranium to Boots
I don't care if he begs you from the base of his roots
all the way through his stem to the tips of his shoots
Listen to me or regret it

The shelves are stocked for horror there
for plants, seeing cousins dead for health care
Rose extract for showers, lavender bled for hair
He'd never forgive or forget it

Yes beauty shops are no place for geraniums
You better get this through your thickened cranium
for your beloved plant, twould be worse than uranium
Keep him away and don't ever let it

be the cause of him going off his water
let him stay up all night watching Ryan's daughter
Whatever it takes, don't let him witness the slaughter
No Boots for your Geranium today

Click here for Jessica Maybury's response poem

Monday, June 21, 2010

Your City of Literature needs you!!

Jane Alger from Dublin City Council is looking for a few lines (under 300 words ideally) from contemporary writers in Dublin to put on a forthcoming website
It's part of Dublin's application for UNESCO City of Literature campaign. If you feel like offering any thoughts on your experiences as a writer in Dublin at the moment, good/bad/indifferent, you can send an email to her with your comments.
Her email is jane (dot) alger (at) dublincity (dot) ie. You can put "City of Literature/Writing in Dublin" in your subject line so she can identify you.
(If you consider yourself a young writer - include your age, they are interested in having perspectives from various age groups)

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Poetikat's Poetry bus - the statue on fire

The task this week was from poetikat - go here for the full back story and for other passengers - basically we had to write a poem on the subject of the following 3 photos... a very flammable religious statue, hit by lightening - with the below results

Here's my effort....

We could do nothing

The statue god was made of string

We could do nothing to save him,

Us... the follower moths

Bathed in the water of life

Just took a spark

To set him off

Pagans smiled and someone, somewhere,

Rolled their eyes, “It’s gotto be a hoax”

They said, and firey rags brightened

The ash dark night, and the kippers in

The pond were smoked

And mobile phones buzzed with the jokes

“Woooah, your sect is on fire”

No one knew that this was just the start

And God was smiting all bad works of art

I’ll finish now before this poem is smitten

But first, I offer the words, as lyrics to the girls in Atomic Kitten

Friday, June 18, 2010

Anne Tannam on the Radio

This week I'm delighted to be welcoming Anne Tannam to the show - Anne is taking on the theme of "Out of the Ordinary" and her poetry is very special indeed.

She began to write a year and a half ago and has just finished the third draft of her first book of poems, working title ‘Take This Life’ and is in the process of looking for a publisher. She reads regularly at the Glor sessions and Seven Towers’ Last Wednesday Series.

In her own words:

“Language has always fascinated me and whatever work I am doing, the importance of how we tell our stories and communicate our essential truths has remained a constant. Through work as a teacher, life coach and parent, the power of using language effectively and honestly, interests me greatly. “Poetry can tell us what human beings are. It can tell us why we stumble and fall and how, miraculously we can stand up” Maya Angelou. When I began to write myself, poetry seemed a natural choice and I believe that no other form of writing communicates so succinctly the unique but ordinary experience of being human.”

Join us for a walk and a talk on Sunday at 4pm (8pm in Tashkent) - Liffey Sound - link on the left, or catch up afterwards on http://sundayscrapbook.blogspot

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Vivid writing....

Yesterday I was reading a book of Truman Capote short stories in the car. The car was parked at the time. The writing was extremely vivid. So vivid that after reading a scene where the character drinks whiskey, I was flicking over the page and in the action of flicking the page remembered where I was, and I thought to myself
"I shouldn't have had that whiskey just now, as I am soon going to have to drive, seeing as I am in a car and all"
Then I said to myself
"You crazy fool! You weren't drinking whiskey! You were reading about drinking whiskey!!"
and at that I was able to relax again, unclench my fist from the steering wheel and continue to read... but I couldn't continue to read, of course, I had to flick back to the whiskey drinking section and try to unlock the secret of the vividness, which I couldn't.
It reminded me of one other instance where the writing was so vivid I felt like I really had lived through it... the other time was with a Haruki Murakami book where I was reading a section concerning a mystic cat torturer, later that day I started telling someone about this awful vivid nightmare I had had that day. Again I'm not sure why this piece of writing had so transported me... I'm sure I've had more such experiences than that, but maybe they're so ingrained that I just can't remember them as false memories and they have somehow snuck into my library of real ones... (I sure had fun with that Big Friendly Giant as a kid though...)

Anyone have any similar experiences to report?

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

A poem which attempts to dissuade you from bringing your Ant to Carphone Warehouse

Another in the ever popular weekly series of silly poems attempting to dissuade you from bringing various animals to various places of commerce. We also accept commissions.

A poem which attempts to dissuade you from bringing your Ant to Carphone Warehouse

Don't bring your Ant to Carphone Warehouse

He'd be sure to think you're quite the rare louse

If you brought him to such a bare house

He'd never forgive you, no way

There's no picnics to pilfer for your little critter

no crumbs between phones, he'd mistake all the glitter

and would be awful upset when it turns out to be bitter

to taste, oh, he'd be so dismayed

They're a social animal this 6 legged arthropod,

But make no mistake, a wink's good as a nod

Don't need electronics to talk to their squad

Phone shops are no place for Formicidae

So be sure to leave your ant at home

And I don't mean the one married to Uncle Eoin

Their antennae are safer away from the phones

No carphone warehouse for your ant today

Meanwhile .... out the front.....

....and away from pesky landscaping paws

.............. nature takes its course..

Monday, June 14, 2010

So the thing is

the garden is actually a supersized, purpose built experiment in science.

We are trying to determine whether the dog will, given time

and the necessary tools,

actually mow the lawn herself.

So far it's looking bad. She's a bit of a Diarmuid Gavin in terms of her innovative ideas in landscaping - daring ideas about exposing the daffodil bulbs
instead of actually leaving them under the soil during the long summer and winter's sleep... hidden potholes under the long grass, to help rotivate the earth and provide a headstart for any burrowing type animals that might make our home their home (also acts as a clever aid to security, no burglar would safely sprint over it to get to the back wall), the border of the flower bed such as it was is buried and blurred by lots and lots of dirt, pansies are long forgotten
all these things contribute to our garden being one of the most unique in the whole estate

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Poetry Bus - starring the poetry dog

So I took option 1 of Jeanne's thought provoking prompts - see details here....

It made me think about sound and our uses of it, back to our earliest days, and I came up with the following...

(BTW I don't think my reading in this is particularly good, plus the poem itself needs a bit more work... and I would have retaped except for the genius performance of my wonder poetry dog, and since it's kind of a poem about doting on the young ones, and since she's turning 2 today, I had to post it anyway, plus had to cut the start and the end of it to fit it in... hope it still looks ok - turn the sound off, but back on again when the poetry dog makes her reappearance, her timing is amazing!)

(...and yes by the way - that is our garden - Mr VC went out there three weeks ago and hasn't been heard from since...)

Friday, June 11, 2010

Peter Cunningham on the Radio

So, this weekend we have the great Peter Cunningham on the show that is known as the Sunday Scrapbook - his chosen theme is "The Collapse of the Celtic Tiger"

Peter is a member of Aosdána and lives mostly in County Kildare, Ireland, although he can also often be found on the sea cliffs of his home county.

Peter was born in Waterford, Ireland, and has at various points in his life worked as a journalist, a kitchen porter, a clerk on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, an accountant, a commodities trader, a barge painter, a newspaper columnist and a sheep farmer. He went to school in Waterpark College, Waterford and in Glenstal Abbey School, County Limerick. He studied English and economics in University College Dublin and began writing short stories in his teens.

He is best known as the author of the Monument novels. Set in the fictional landscape of Peter’s native city and surrounding countryside, these stories are about Irish people and their lives and loves from the late 19th century to the present day. The novels have been widely acclaimed, in Ireland, the UK and US, and in translation.

His new novel, Capital Sins, a darkly satirical novel set during the collapse of the Celtic Tiger, is launching next Tuesday. SCOOP! and even better - dedicated readers of this blog are ALL invited to the launch... details below

"New Island and Dubray Books cordially invite you

to celebrate the publication of


A Novel

by Peter Cunningham

launched by John Murray, RTÉ

6.30pm, Tuesday, June 15th, 2010

Dubray Books, 36 Grafton Street, Dublin 2 "

Make sure you're tuned to Liffey Sound, 4pm (that's 5am in Alaska) on Sunday to hear us or catch up on the show archives ( soon after.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

I Volunteered at DWF and all I got was this....

Actually it's a lovely t-shirt.. with writer's names on the back, as predicted in my articles a few weeks ago - poetry is the new rock and roll and writing festival t-shirts are the new concert t-shirts.
I got to see a few cool acts at the Dublin Writer's Festival, but the grand finale was probably the most interesting - since it consisted of a crash course of the big names of the Gallery Press poets... they were celebrating 40 years publishing, and the event was MC'd by the lovely Seamus Heaney - he didn't read any of his own poems, but introduced the word gallery with his usual panash - he actually had looked up the word "Gallery" in a dictionary for the occasion, (I know - you'd think he'd have known what it meant, bless him) and he told us one of the definitions was a covered space to wander in, which echoed one of Keats' definitions of poetry - ie it being a region to wander in. No buses were mentioned. Anyway I was delighted to get a chance to see all these poets in the flesh, who had previously been as unknown to me as the chances of Honduras getting anywhere in the world cup.
First up was Ciaran Carson - he began by playing us a tune on a tinwhistle, and then told us the myth of the Aisling (a traditional Irish poem which takes place in the setting of a dream), before reading us a poem which saw the sad eyes of a horse transferred onto Turnbull, and Turnbull's mad eyes looking out from the horses head.
Michael Coady was next with a triplet of poems, the first about his parents' honeymoon, which I thought was lovely - and the last called "Woman of 5 bathrooms" a take off of Woman of the roads - which got a lot of laughs from the audience.
Gerald Dawe told us a childhood pooem and another money themed one with a tax exile who was trying to decide who to ring for the craic from his hideaway.
Peter Fallon, the founder of gallery press was out after that with a couple of poems that I would have liked to have in front of me, they were quite subtle - one about a gate in the middle of a field, another with a daughter finding her way through fresh water.
I found Alan Gillis the most immediately gettable and enjoyable, maybe partly because I was sitting next to his lovely parents, who had been chatting away to me before hand. He read a gorgeous love sonnet with the theme of music that I really loved, and another longer poem about the dilemma of whether or not to make friends with an ex. Both poems were extremely vivid, and sensual (a sinister car park, and a girl with ribs the same colour as white fillet being just a couple of the memorable images) and the second got a lot of loud laughs.
There was then a break for refreshments. We came back to Bill Whelan and friends. He had arranged music to go with 3 gallery poems. The first a prayerful number, the second a really tragic poem about incest and loneliness and the third a delightful song about childhood which was my own personal favourite.
After that we had Vona Groarke, who had a lovely poem about diving into water in the West, as she said herself - rather than do things, sometimes it's just as good to write about them as if you had. She had a couple of other western styled numbers.
Then out came Dermot Healy - his killer poem for me was the one about storms not promised and the brilliant way he delivered the last lines, which I can still hear in my head "They wreck you, they wreck you, they do"
Medbh McGuckian was out next and told us she wanted to read a couple of poems related to her mother's death - there was a lovely line about when the mind stops buzzing like a bee, and a new word for me in the shape of dormission (where you get taken straight to heaven without having to actually die)
Derek Mahon followed her with a very geographically definite set, one from Antrim Road, one about the floods in Cork last year (poor quiet Munster!) and another set in Italy.
Then came John Montague, he had a great one about his cousin destroying a grand piano, and I found myself glancing at the instrument Bill Whelan had just left on stage not half an hour earlier, with an urge to have a go at it.
Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin finished the night, and why wouldn't she, having won the covetted golden pen award only last week. She had another Cork poem - this time about the polio epidemic and the freedom of flying through kid free streets on her bike on the one message she was sent on.
Twas a lovely show, almost as good as a Glór session, and it was a bit of a marvel seeing them all out on stage at the end for their bow - with Ciaran Carson almost pushing Peter Fallon off the stage in his effort to get him to take a seperate bow.
(someone, not I, mind you, said it reminded them of a school play)

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

A Poem which attempts to dissuade you from bringing your lobster to Monsoon

Another in the popular series of poems which attempt to dissuade you from bringing various types of house-hold animals to various public places

A Poem which attempts to dissuade you from bringing your lobster to Monsoon

Don't bring your lobster to Monsoon
Don't care if he says there's plenty room
I assure you, you'd be quite the loon
if you brought him in a hurry

He'd soon discover it was a mistake
when instead of seeing friends like the cod and the hake
he'd find flowing robes but no wavy lakes
it'd be quite the shock, quite the blur he

wouldn't find rain coming down as he'd hoped
There'd be no drops of water, I don't think he'd cope
He'd be sad as a turtle would sit there and mope
his claws caught on garments all furry

Yes women's clothing's no place for lobsters
He'd be better off becoming a mobster
at least then you wouldn't hear him sob sir
no monsoon for your lobster today

NOTE: This is written by someone who has just reached an awkward age, just today in fact. The awkwardness deriving from the fact that her age is now a prime number - after this it'll be another 6 years before such an awkward age hits again,,, but for now it's awkward...

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Quiet Nights and Eamonn Lynskey

So to tell you something of the past and something else of the future. Last Saturday I found my way through the Westlife concert goers to a little laneway in the North inner city with a door marked Seomra Spraoi.
Behind this doorway was a converted garage decorated with fairy lights and jam packed with an eclectic bunch of revellers and friendly faces. The place is run by Owensy and Sinead Corcoran, and the evening was opened by a band called Traz - they are a scarily talented bunch of ambitious, experimental musos who played four lovely songs, one of which was only invented in the past week (and they're only in Transition year yet). Watch out for them, they were spell-binding.
Another highlight was the great Sonia Maria, who wowed the crowd with her beautiful singing and exciting mix of instruments - she too had the idea of composing something especially for the evening - hers was actually cool, in very sharp contrast to my super geeky effort.
When she finished up the guy sitting next to me said, "that'd be a hard act to follow". I was on next. I still read the purpose built poem... without the pesky extra 's' - sadly also without another line or two - which threw the rhyming scheme in the earlier part of the poem out the door... anyway, it could only get better from there.. and it went alright. There were people shusshing each other in the doorway trying to listen, my fan(s) mobbed me afterwards... I gave away a couple of poems on paper, (the three I didn't know off) and redirected everyone else here... (I mean to this blog - in case you think that here was meant to be clickable and I just forgot to link it, oh ye of little faith)

Now to the Future.....
If you'd like to see a really wonderful poet in action - come to see Eamonn Lynskey's launch of
"And Suddenly the Sun Again"

tomorrow evening in Lucan Library - ie Wednesday at 6pm. He has given me the huge priviledge of being the introducer of him to the crowd, and I'm a little terrified (what with not being as regular a book launch goer as I probably should be and not being sure what's required and knowing that leg one of his launch went fabulously well introduced by the great Karl Parkinson)
So if you'd like to see me try to look all knowing about poetry, you can find me there and then... Eamonn's new book is brilliant by the way... and if you haven't already heard his show you'll find it in the scrapbook archives.... do check him out.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Poets and Hair - more sense making

So last week the question arose - does poetry lead to bad hair or vice versa?

I have been checking the question out with the world's leading scientists, and while it is generally conceded that there is a strong link between bad hair and good poetry, there is still some level of disagreement as to what the relationship is.

Modern Science has discovered that the hair looms (little cells about the size of a marble just inside your skull where the hair is manufactured) serve the dual function of hair production as well as being the central storage site for poetical images. Thus some Scientists argue that the more over crowded these sites become with crazy/quirky and new ideas - the more likely they are to shift dramatically in temperature causing hairs feeding out of them to buckle and generally look quite disorganised.
Dr HildaFreddle says "We have even seen instances where red hot ideas can singe the hair before it even has a chance to leave the follicle, and this can cause it to be let out shorter than the rest of the hair - thus giving the illusion that the poet hasn't had a hair cut in quite a long time"
Hamish Seaney says "It's really terrible, I always have to book in with the hairdresser for a good few hours when I know I'm going on a big writing spraoi - it's the only way I know I'll be presentable again the following day."
Other Sociopsychological scientists studying the issue have come back with a slight variation on the hypothesis. "Yes funny ideas can cause your hair to look strange and scraggly," says Dr Poit "- but once this happens there is a self propogating feedback loop established whereby the poet is ostracised from 'normal' society because of their funny hair, then they get even more lonely and outsiderish, more likely to write poems, and the cycle continues"

"This is why some poets keep their hair very short" admits one famous poet, who would prefer to go unnamed, "too many of our number were being mistaken for simple mad people, so they have to be a bit more covert now, hiding the bad hair for the sake of getting their poetry to a wider audience." So far no link has been found between good hair and bad poetry.

Here's a pic of me at the Cáca Milis caberet with mad hair proudly on show, picture courtesy of the lovely folks at Cold 24, my hair was dead straight at the start of my set, and just kept getting madder with each poem, this was on the fourth one in.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

On Weaver's Poetry Bus

This week the poetry bus is taking a trip of looking to flora and fauna for inspiration... See weaver's blog for more...

Here's my effort..

In other news: I've millions of news, but sadly a bit too insanely busy to impart much of it, including things about the lovely Quiet Night thing with the coolness and yoof therein, as well as the research update on Poetry - Does it make your hair bad or does bad hair make good poetry, plus a full report on fun and frolics at Dubland Writer's festival so they'll all be coming soon....

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Peter Goulding on the Radio

This week I'm very excited to be welcoming the first person I've ever met purely through the internet, onto the radio, Peter Goulding.
Peter blogs over here, and his poetry has long been a source of great entertainment and hilarity for me. He is a bus poet. He once snogged Dana, and has been onstage with the Boomtown Rats - but sadly hadn't told me that before we taped the show, so we won't be talking about that, we will be talking about many other things though... check him out

"Peter wrote song lyrics for the punk band he was part of many years ago, since taking up writing again in 1985 his writing has taken him to such diverse locations as the Shelbourne FC matchday programme, The Community Voice newspaper, and being poet in residence on the Creedon Show back when it had a daytime slot. His humorous verse has found homes in the shortlist of humorous verse section of the Strokestown festival's competition, was placed in the Kilkenny Swift Satire and Boyne Writers Swift competition and last year he was crowned Baffle Bard down in Loughrea, for which he won a stone turnip.
He published a book of mainly humorous verse in 2009 - A Flash of Orange - and two chapbooks this year.
More recently he has been published in Revival, Boyne Berries, Snakeskin, Southword and Crannog with some more serious poems. He was chosen for this year's Poetry Ireland Introductions series, recently won the Golden Pen competition and is generally pleased with how things are going with his writing." And why wouldn't he be...

He has chosen the themes of Rhyme and Timing to base the show around, and I can reveal there will be plenty of laughs and interesting insights along the way....

See ye at the usual time 4pm (or 7pm in Nairobi) this Sunday on Liffey Sound - live online at the link on the right, or catch up on the archives - at

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Anyone up for a Quiet night in this Saturday?

No, not at my house, silly billy... over here

I've written another purpose built poem for the event, again not sure whether I'll read it... - as always - opinions/ random irresponsible encouragement most welcome... :-)

A Quiet Night In

I'd love to go out
but I couldn't be bothered
didn't want to dress up, or look for another
excuse, so I'm just telling you straight and you better believe it
If I go I'll only be askin you when I can leave it
what I can talk about next to this dude
whether my hair looks all tangled and crude
why does what I'm wearing look faded and dated
next to the ethEreal annoying sprites out there
(the etherEAl annoying sprites are everywhere
no less annoying the fact that I can't decide how to pronounce em
with their stupid EtherEAlness)
who the hell do you think you are
where the hell are the toilets located
and who wants to be here, when home is so nicer
with its puppy dogs tails, and its sugar and spicer
and there's no con artists, selling kegs for a treasure
and there's no closing time, just bed at your leisure
no queueing for taxis or trembling sins
life's much more relaxing on a quiet night in

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

A Poem which attempts to dissuade you from bringing your Tarantula to Mothercare

Another in the popular series of poems that aim to dissuade you from bringing various types of animals to various types of shop...

Don't bring your Tarantula to Mothercare
You'll find you'd be unwelcome there
with an 8 legged friend in a cover of hair
All the babies would be screamin

Baby shops are no place for tarantulas
They'd swing on the nappies, bite into the hulas
meant for teething babes, who're called things like Lula
and Jingo and Myrtle and Eminem

No, the webs of your charming pale faced arachnid
will not make a decorative lace for the kid
Nor will they stop the blinking back lids
of the prams comin up, as they flee 'im

I don't care if he pretends to be from Nepali
or Icelandic, or Belgian or even Bengali
There'll be no baby shops for this creepy crawly
No Mothercare for your Tarantula today