It's satisfying to finish off the year with a poem included in the current issue of Spontaneity. The arts magazine deals with inspiration and it links pieces of writing, art and photography like threads in a labyrinth or a spider's web. Edited by Ruth McKee this issue features work by Clodagh Beresford Dunne, Denise Blake, Aoife Reilly, Fiona Perry, Susan Lindsay, Julia Webb, Niall McArdle, Sandra Arnold and I.
My included poem 'Devil-may-care' was written in the summer after a trip to the sea. It links to a painting in a previous issue of Spontaneity called 'Firewalk with me'. Have a read y'all and enjoy!
Edited by Doire Press poet Simon Lewis, Sixteen Magazine publishes fiction and poetry on the theme/prompt of a colour on the sixteenth of every month. My poem Coors Light was chosen this month on the colour brown, alongside fiction by Shivaun Conroy. You can read the work here: http://www.sixteen.ie
Thanks to Frank Murphy of Meath Writers' Circle for including two of my poems in the group's 2nd Annual Magazine which focused on culture and heritage, people or place, particularly in relation to County Meath. As you can imagine there is a wide variety of work included with poems from Michael Farry, Tom French, Frank Murphy, Kieran Murray, James Linnane, Peggy Murphy, Willie G. Hodgins and the late Tommy Murray and Myra Lalor, to name just a few. It's really lovely to be included in a magazine about Meath showcasing snapshots of our county.
This poem about Newtown Abbey is an older poem and it is true that dawn is a friend to the muses. The other poem included is called The Glass House and it was written on the location of The Porchfields in Trim.
I recently visited the IMMA to view the Lucian Freud exhibition which features 50 works of art loaned to the museum until 2021. It is well worth a visit. He is an artist I knew little about.
Lucian Freud (1922 - 2011) is widely recognised as one of the greatest realist painters of the 20th century and is renowned for his intimate, honest, often visceral portrayal of the human form. Freud painted from life, and usually spend a great deal of time with each subject, demanding the model's presence even while working on the background of the portrait. A nude completed in 2007 required sixteen months of work, with the model posing all but four evenings during that time; with each session averaging five hours, the painting took approximately 2,400 hours to complete.A rapport with his models was necessary, and while at work, Freud was characterised as "an outstanding raconteur and mimic".
He was the grandson of Sigmund Freud.
One work that really took my fancy was I reached inside myself through time by Dennis McNulty which can be found in The Hennessy Art Fund for IMMA Collection. The multi-media piece features a re-edited acapella of the AHA song The sun always shines on TV.
I'm really looking forward to seeing this exhibition on the 11th November in the OPW building in Trim. Members of The Boyne Writers submitted poems about Tara to Rath Chairn Art Group, the Art Group then used the writers' works as prompts and the base for new paintings. I believe that I will have three poems painted. Two of the poems below and suitable for this dark time of the year. The Woods on Tara Hill was inspired by a New Year's Eve walk on a Tara that was covered with snow and ice. Sometimes I imagine what the old people would like to say if they could have a voice. The poem written in Irish was an experiment and I tried my best with my limited knowledge of the language.
The Woods on Tara Hill
We are smothered –
Behind every trunk an exit, and none.
Way is leading on to way.
Sunlight illumines briefly.
Who goes there?
A stag? A man? A Ghost? A God?
Pray stay with us for a thousand years
And more above the river and hinterland!
Between the oak and holly we are gagged.
Layers of leaves, dry as sand, rustle on the ground.
We are dying in the woods and our innocence expires…
Some return, occasionally light fires and remember,
Hug the trees like they are souls, place coins in the
Bid us the blessing of Litha by the Lia Fáil.
We ache to break surface, scream with beasts in the
Few heed us, release us; forgotten voices of the past.
Where are our poets and our druids?
Brethren we are the Tuatha, the Fianna and the Sí!
Drink deep our wines carried in the midnight murmur;
"Time held me green and dying Though I sang in my chains like the sea."
"When the heart weeps for what it has lost the spirit laughs for what it has found."
"(i do not know what it is about you that closes and opens; only something in me understands the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses) nobody, not even the rain, has such small hands"
Orla Fay is a member of Boyne Writers Group. In 2001 she won the Meath Chronicle/Bookwise Short Story Competition and in 2003 the Drogheda Creative Writers Adult Poetry Competition. In 2004 she had a poem commended in the Golden Pen Poetry Competition and in 2005 she was awarded 3rd place in the Dunlavin Poetry Competition and published in the 23rd Dunlavin Festival of Arts Annual. She has been published in the Meath Chronicle, New Poems of Oriel (2006), Boyne Berries magazine, Crannog Magazine, Revival poetry journal, the Sharp Review, Ropes 2010, NUIG's Writers' Society's Writers' Exchange Chapbook, Riposte, Wordlegs, The Linnet's Wings, The Stony Thursday Book 2011 & 2013, thefirstcut, Shot Glass Journal, Census 3, Silver Blade Magazine, HeadSpace, Outburst, The Galway Review, The Artistic Atlas of Galway, Shamrock Haiku Journal, Carillon, Abridged and Orbis. In 2008 she was a finalist in the Meath County Library Eist Poetry Competition. In 2009 she had a poem commended in the Francis Ledwidge International Poetry Award. In 2010 she had a poem highly commended in the Windows Publications Cavan Crystal Poetry Award. In 2011 she had a story selected for The Lonely Voice: Short Story Introductions in The Irish Writers' Centre. In June 2012 she published her poetry chapbook Drawn to the Light. She was a featured reader at O'Bheal in Cork in March 2013. She was highly commended for poetry in The Jonathan Swift Creative Writing Awards in October 2013 and long-listed in the WOW fiction Awards 2014.