Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Launch of two new books, by Pádraig J Daly and Ger Reidy

Dedalus Press launches two new collections of poetry on Monday 31 May.

Poets Pádraig J Daly and Ger Reidy will read from their respective books, Afterlife and Drifting Under The Moon.

The event takes place at 7.00 pm, at the Irish Writers' Centre, 19 Parnell Square, Dublin 2.

All welcome.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Poetry International (Ireland) features 'Landing Places'

Taking a rest from the usual format of focusing on two poets per update, the Irish domain of Poetry International this month features a selection of five poets all drawn from the recent Dedalus Press  anthology, Landing Places: Immigrant Poets in Ireland. >>>

Print interview with Ray Givans

Interesting interview here with Dedalus poet Ray Givans on his debut collection from last year, Tolstoy in Love.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Launch of The Song the Oriole Sang by Philip McDonagh

A LARGE AND ENTHUSIASTIC CROWD attended the launch this evening of Philip McDonagh's second collection of poetry, The Song the Oriole Sang, in No. 5 Leinster Street, Dublin 2, the beautifully refurbished Georgian building (with perhaps a record 4 bay windows), which houses the Friends of the National Gallery of Ireland, as well as offices of the Gallery per se, and the lovingly restored trio of rooms in which the event took place.

 L to R: Philip McDonagh with Minister Micheál Martin, TD

INTRODUCING THE POET, Minister for Foreign Affairs Micheál Martin, T.D., spoke of his pleasure at being asked to launch the book.

"I always consider it a great gift to be able to write poetry in any form," he said, "and to write poetry of this quality in particular. Poetry can bring tranquility, peace, reflection; it can be a little oasis. And you'll be glad to know," he went on with a smile, "as I said to Philip on the way in, that I was reading his poetry during the Fianna Fáil Parliamentry Party forty minutes ago, and it was a wonderful contrast actually..." At which point the room exploded in laughter.

The Minister also spoke of the fact that much of McDonagh's new collection is inspired by his previous diplomatic postings, in India, in Rome in the Holy See and in Finland, and noted that the double role of poet/diplomat is one that is well understood in the Department of Foreign Affairs.

"You may also read into that that the Secretary General and myself, when we're considering postings ... take particular care to make sure that locations can become the inspiration point of great poetry. I take it that Colm McCarthy of An Bord Snip is not in the audience..." More laughter.

Recalling poet/diplomats such as Valentine Iremonger, he noting that the current Irish Ambassador in Prague, Richard Ryan, is also a poet. He also reminded his audience that the current President of the European Council, Herman Van Rompuy, is a poet. "He specialises in haikus, a Japanese form of 3 lines and only 17 syllables... My life would be much neater if all ambassadors confined their reports to just 17 syllables," he quipped.

L to R: Dr Marie Bourke, Keeper and Head of Education at NGI, and Joseph Woods of Poetry Ireland

Among those present at the event, at which McDonagh read a number of poems from the book, were His Excellency Mikhail Timoshkin, Ambassador of Russia to Ireland; Minister for Health and Children, Mary Harney and husband Brian Geoghegan; Ms Justice Yvonne Murphy and Mr Justice Adrian Hardiman; Dr. Thomas Kabdebo, translator and former Director of the Library at NUI, Maynooth; Joseph Woods of Poetry Ireland; David Cooney, Secretary General at the Department of Foreign Affairs; Sinéad MacAodha of Ireland Literature Exchange; teacher and poetry-advocate, Niall McMonagle; Panchali Mukherji, Calcutta-born contributor to the recent Dedalus anthology, Landing Places: Immigrant Poets in Ireland; Dedalus poets Gerard Smyth (also of The Irish Times) and Iggy McGovern; Paddy Doherty of the recently established Puffin Ireland imprint; regular Dedalus supporters Danny Rogers, Liam O'Reilly and Dardis Clarke, among others; and a significant number of the poet's family, friends and colleagues.

 L to R: Panchali Mukherji, Danny Rogers, and Raffaela Tranchino (Dedalus Press)

Our thanks to Dr Marie Bourke, Keeper and Head of Education, and all at NGI for their welcome.

L to R: Philip McDonagh signs copies of The Song the Oriole Sang

All photographs © Pat Boran

AudioRoom Podcast No. 1
To listen to Philip McDonagh reading at the launch of The Song the Oriole Sang, follow the link to download or subscribe to the new Dedalus Press AudioRoom podcast here. To subscribe using iTunes, selecte Application/iTunes from the drop-down menu option. Alternatively, visit the iTunes Music Store and search for AudioRoom: New Writing from Ireland or simply for 'Dedalus Press'.

Further information on The Song the Oriole Sang here

Friday, May 07, 2010

Gerard Smyth signing books at Kennys of Galway

Poet Gerard Smyth signs copies of The Fullness of Time: New and Selected Poems (Dedalus Press, 2010) at Kennys of Galway, during Cúirt 2010.

Photograph © Pat Boran

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Interviews with Poets

Interviews with two Dedalus Press poets may be found online at the Australian online Foam:e magazine,

Direct links as follows: Enda Wyley here & Enda Coyle-Greene here

Capacity crowd for launch of new books by Paul Perry, Grace Wells and Gerard Smyth

A CAPACITY, and very warm, crowd tonight at Dublin's Damer Hall for the launch of three new titles from Dedalus: Paul Perry's The Last Falcon and Small Ordinance; Grace Wells' When God Has Been Called Away to Greater Things; and Gerard Smyth's: The Fullness of Time: New and Selected Poems.

Introducing the readers, Dedalus publisher Pat Boran spoke of his pleasure to be launching three books that between them emphasized the importance of the role of small presses: to introduce new talent (with Grace Wells' debut), to follow the trajectory of writers in mid-career (with Paul Perry's third collection) and, from time to time, to stop and gather up the best of a extended body of work (Gerard Smyth's 'new and selected').

Among the barely standing room capacity crowd were art gallery owner John Taylor; novelists Claire Kilroy and Jack Harte, and poet/novelist Philip Casey; publisher of The Stinging Fly literary magazine Declan Meade; Literary Editor Caroline Walsh and a number of staff members of The Irish Times, including Shane Hegarty and poet Rosita Boland; Arts Council Literature Officer Sarah Bannan; Ireland Literature Exchange Director Sinéad MacAodha, en famille; Marie Bourke, Keeper and Head of Education at the National Gallery of Ireland; a significant number of students from the Faber Poetry Academy (facilitated by Paul Perry) as well as from other writing workshops throughout the city; family members and co-workers of the featured poets, of course, but also a full complement of enthusiastic poetry readers, whose continued support for the press is a welcome reminder that limited resources don''t necessarily lead to limited vision or connection.

There was also, it must be said, a truly remarkable number of poets present, among them Dennis O'Driscoll, Brendan Kennelly, Maurice Harmon, Aifric MacAodha, John Ennis, Enda Coyle-Greene, Patrick Chapman, Patrick Deeley (with artist wife Judy), John O'Donnell, Hugh O'Donnell, Enda Wyley, Richard Tillinghast, Yiorgos Chouliaras (Press Counsellor to the Embassy of Greece), John F Deane, Pádraig J Daly and Maurice Scully. And no doubt others obscured by the multitude.

Different styles and approaches aside, there are few nights that really feel like a celebration of poetry itself, in whatever shape and form it takes. This was one of them.

Further information on the books:

L to R: Iggy McGovern, Richard Tillinghast and Grace Wells

Poet / Poetry Ireland Director, Joseph Woods, with poet/scriptwriter Noel Duffy

Paul Perry and his wife, Aoife

Poets Enda Wyley and Iggy McGovern (with, well, something mysterious in an envelope...) and radio producer (of Sunday Miscellany) Clíodhna Ní Anluain

Finally, reproduced here as documentary evidence that all three readers did show up, a hopelessly blurred photo (taken by Enda Wyley) of poet/Dedalus publisher Pat Boran, with radio producer Clíodhna Ní Anluain and Gerard Smyth