National Poetry Day takes place on the first Thursday of October and is part of an initiative in the UK and Ireland to encourage participation in and enjoyment of the poetic arts. This year there are events happening all around Ireland on 2 Oct, to appeal to all poetry tastes. I'll be reading, along with my fellow 'Words on the Wind' scribes at the Irish Writers' Centre's Open Mic night for members, friends and writing groups who frequent the Centre. It's a great opportunity to get a taste for the contemporary poetry scene in Dublin and also features guest readings by established poets Deirdre Cartmill, Alan Jude Moore, Maria McManus, Gerard Smyth, Jessica Traynor and Michael McLoughlin. From 7 - 9.30pm, with 5 minute slots for each poet, it's free admission and open to all.
National Poetry Day Events throughout Ireland:
Colin Dardis & Leslie Nichol: Exhibition: The Wide Justice at Line Hall Library, Belfast from 9.30 - 5.30pm.
Cork University Hospital, Wilton - poetry readings by 12 local poets from 12 - 2pm.
Jane Clarke & Shirley McClure are reading at The Courthouse Arts Centre in Tinahely from 1 - 2 pm, with an Open Mic from 2 - 3pm.
Moyra Donaldson, Pamela Greene & Myra Vennard are reading at Shorebird Beach Coffee Hut, Ballycastle from 7.30pm.
Matthew Sweeney, Mary Noonan, Eileen Sheehan & Doireann Ní Ghríofa are reading at Lough Derg Yacht Club from 8pm, as part of the Dromineer Literary Festival.
In the UK:
Other places to get your poetic groove on over the next few days:
Dromineer Literary Festival - Thurs 2 - Sun 5 Oct.
And one for the diary:
Lingo | A Spoken Word Festival - Fri 17 - Sun 19 Oct.
If you get a chance, do pop along to at least one of these events - there is a lot of amazing talent in this country, just waiting to be discovered and enjoyed.
If you are the organiser of a poetry event happening in Ireland over the next few days, feel free to leave a comment below and a link to your event.
And if you're on Twitter, use the #thinkofapoem hashtag to post a line from a poem you remember and check out other poetry fans' favourite poems.