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September 2018

Date: September 12 @ 5:00 pm
Time: 5:00 pm
Venue Station House Theatre
Address: Station House Complex

Reading with John O’Donnell, Tony Curtis and Seán Ó Coistealbha with music by Marie Walsh and friends John O’Donnell’s work has been published and broadcast in Ireland, the UK, the US, Australia and New Zealand. Awards include the Irish National Poetry Prize, the Ireland Funds Prize, the Irish Times/Anna Livia Prize, and the Hennessy Poetry Award. He also won the Hennessy Award for Fiction. His most recent work, Sunlight: New and Selected Poems, was published earlier this year; his other publications include Some Other Country (2002), Icarus Sees His Father Fly (2004), and On Water (2014). A senior counsel, he lives and works in Dublin. Festival regular Tony Curtis was…

Date: September 13 @ 2:00 pm
Time: 2:00 pm
Venue Clifden Library
Address: Market Street

Fred Johnston was born in Belfast in 1951. Most recently, his poems have appeared in The Spectator, the New Statesman, and a short story in Stand magazine; some more new work is also due to appear there. A collection of short stories, Dancing In The Asylum, was published by Parthian a couple of years ago, and his most recent collection of poetry is Alligator Days (Revival Press). A new collection, Rogue States, is due from Salmon Poetry this autumn. In 1986, Fred founded Galway’s annual literature festival, Cúirt; in 2002, he was writer-in-residence to the Princess Grace Irish Library at Monaco. Fred has published nine collections of poems, four novels…

Date: September 13 @ 4:00 pm
Time: 4:00 pm
Venue Station House Theatre
Address: Station House Complex

Reading by E.M. Reapy and Michael Gorman with songs by Brian O’Rourke E.M. Reapy is from Mayo and has an MA in creative writing from Queen’s University, Belfast. In 2016, her debut novel Red Dirt was published by Head of Zeus. It won Newcomer of the Year at the 2016 Irish Book Awards and the 2017 Rooney Prize for Irish Literature. Reapy is currently a UNESCO Dublin City of Literature writer-in-residence. Michael Gorman was born in Sligo and educated at Summerhill College and National University College Galway, where he taught for many years. He has edited The Mayo Anthology (Mayo Co. Council) and 21: An Anthology (NUIG). He is a…

Date: September 14 @ 3:00 pm
Time: 3:00 pm
Venue Station House Theatre
Address: Station House Complex

Reading with Aifric Mac Aodha and Louis De Paor and Music by Lynn Saoirse Foreign News (2017) is Aifric Mac Aodha’s first collection with The Gallery Press. She has taught in St Petersburg, New York and Canada and has lectured in old and modern Irish at UCD. She lives in Dublin, where she works for Irish-language publisher An Gúm. Her poetry is both playful and exact. As Clíona Ní Ríordáin put it in The Irish Times: ‘If the subject matter of her poems is serious, the images that are dotted throughout the volume are engaging and contemporary, they include a laconic DJ, Marilyn Monroe and her voluminous skirts and the…

Date: September 14 @ 5:00 pm
Time: 5:00 pm
Venue Station House Theatre
Address: Station House Complex

Clifden Arts Festival welcomes back Paul Durcan, one of Ireland’s most distinctive poets. The Dublin-born poets writings are funny subversive narratives and self-mocking poems of underachievement, poems celebrating love and sex of the lives of famous writers and artists, as well as tender verses commemorating the dead. He is respected as a critical commentator on Irish history and society, and won the Whitbread Poetry Award for his collection Daddy, Daddy (1990). Some of his most recent collections include The Art of Life; The Laughter of Mothers; Life is a Dream and Praise in Which I Live and Move and Have My Being. Writing of his 2008 collection The Laughter of…

Date: September 14 @ 6:30 pm
Time: 6:30 pm
Venue O’Malley’s Bar
Address: Market Street

Book Launch: See The Wood From The Trees by Marion McGarry and Dermot O’Donovan Tadhg O’Mahony, senior scientific officer at the Environmental Protection Agency, will launch See The Wood From The Trees by Marion McGarry and Dermot O’Donovan (Artisan House, Letterfrack, 2018). Stunningly designed and highly visual, See The Wood From The Trees documents the story of trees felled by storms in Áras an Uachtaráin and subsequently gifted by the President, Michael D. Higgins and his wife, Sabina, to GMIT Letterfrack. Around this simple but inspired gesture, the book tells of the chequered history of trees in Ireland as well as the story of Áras an Uachtaráin and the plantations…

Date: September 15 @ 9:30 am
Time: 9:30 am
Venue Foyle’s Hotel
Address: Main Street

Curiosity Does Not Kill The Cat: Writers’ Workshop with John Liddy Founding editor with Jim Burke of The Stony Thursday Book, John Liddy has published 11 collections of poetry in English – three with Spanish translations – as well as books for children. His own translations include the work of Irish and Spanish poets. He was Limerick City of Culture Poet-in-Residence for July 2014 and co-edited 1916-2016: An Anthology of Reactions. His latest book, Madrid and Other Poems was published earlier this year, and a collection of all his Spanish-related poems is forthcoming. Born in Co. Cork in 1954, John grew up in Limerick and took a degree with the…

Date: September 15 @ 2:00 pm
Time: 2:00 pm
Venue Foyle’s Hotel
Address: Main Street

This is a vibrant group – their members have published books of poetry and non-fiction and contributed to Sunday Miscellany.  Their broadcasts on Connemara Community Radio range from scary Halloween stories to heart-moving memoir. Come and enjoy their Arts Festival programme – an hour of stories, poetry and the beautiful music of the harp, played by Lynn Saoirse. Everyone welcome, and admission is free.

Date: September 15 @ 5:00 pm
Time: 5:00 pm
Venue Alcock & Brown Hotel
Address: Market Square

Poetry Reading and Songs with Rita Ann Higgins and Con ‘Fada’ Ó Drisceoil Rita Ann Higgins has published 11 books of poetry, including Tongulish, Ireland Is Changing Mother, and Throw in the Vowels: New & Selected Poems, all from Bloodaxe. In 2010, Salmon published her controversial memoir, Hurting God – Part Essay Part Rhyme. She is also a playwright with a number of plays to her name, including The Plastic Bag, The Empty Frame (about the incarceration of Hanna Greally) and The Colossal Longing of Julie Connors. She has recently written two short films in Irish. The Galway-based writer’s many awards include a Peadar O’Donnell Award and several Arts Council…

Date: September 15 @ 6:30 pm
Time: 6:30 pm
Venue O’Malley’s Bar
Address: Market Street

From the early poem ‘Madrid Through The Eyes of a Stranger,’ first published in the bilingual collection Wine and Hope/Vino y Esperanza (1999), to the epic title poem, ‘Madrid,’ in this present collection, John Liddy returns to his adopted home, no longer a stranger but seasoned in its idiosyncrasies. It is as though he has come full circle. But he moves further afield to take in Galicia, Asturias, Atapuerca and the Ireland he has never stopped writing about. Madrid and Other Poems takes the reader beyond place and country into the heart of modern living with its political and social upheavals. The tribute poem to poets past and present and…

Date: September 16 @ 2:30 pm
Time: 2:30 pm
Venue Station House Theatre
Address: Station House Complex

Robyn Rowland has 13 books, 10 of poetry. In her new book, Mosaics from the Map (Doire, 2018) history is lived in personal stories through war, change, family and friendship – in Ireland, Turkey, the Balkans and Australia. They touch on Cork, the city from which the poet’s family emigrated to Australia and where an Armenian created Hadji Bey’s Turkish Delight; Sarajevo, flowering now after a brutal war; Alcock and Brown and their pathway from POW camps to fly the first crossing of the Atlantic; Titanic with her very modern story; and Turkey, a country for blossoming friendships and love. Robyn’s poetry appears in national and international journals, in over 40 anthologies, including 8 editions of Best…

Date: September 16 @ 4:00 pm
Time: 4:00 pm
Venue Station House Theatre
Address: Station House Complex

James Harpur will read from his new collection of poems, The White Silhouette, which explores the numinous in a snowy pilgrimage from West Cork to Dorset, the mystery of Russian icons, the Perseids meteor shower, and the medieval Celtic art of the Book of Kells. The title poem is a ‘compelling spiritual memoir’ (TLS) of ‘missed encounters’ in the landscapes of Tipperary, Wiltshire, and Patmos. James is poetry editor of Temenos and a member of Aosdána. His awards include the Michael Hartnett Prize, the Vincent Buckley Award, and the UK National Poetry Competition. He writes poetry in the wilds of West Cork and appears regularly on RTÉ’s Sunday Miscellany and…

Date: September 16 @ 6:00 pm
Time: 6:00 pm
Venue Paddy Power’s
Address: Main Street

This spellbinding entertainment is now in its ninth year! Poems, songs and recitations about horses, ponies and greyhounds are presented by an assortment of local and national crowd-pleasers. The audience exceeds the gatherings in Paddy Power bookmakers for derbies or grand nationals! It is co-compered by Des Kavanagh and Pete Molineux. An atmosphere of banter and high culture pervades. Paddy Power kindly sponsors cheese and wine. Admission €5

Date: September 17 @ 2:00 pm
Time: 2:00 pm
Venue Station House Theatre
Address: Station House Complex

Jim Murphy is director emeritus of the Irish Studies Program at Villanova University, Pennsylvania. In 2017, Jim was gifted with a letter found by his Aunt Joan of Ballyhaunis, Co. Mayo. In this letter, written around 1938, Jim’s father – who hailed from Co. Leitrim – writes from Brooklyn to ask for Jim’s mother’s hand in marriage. This beautiful letter captures the joys and heartbreaks of emigration and immigration; hopes for a future in a new world are tempered by the sense of loss. It is a story that will have a special resonance for a west of Ireland audience. Séidiú is a vocal ensemble founded in Clifden in 2015.…

Date: September 17 @ 4:00 pm
Time: 4:00 pm
Venue Station House Theatre
Address: Station House Complex

Cork writer Danny Denton’s first novel, The Earlie King and the Kid in Yellow, conjures up a post-digital Ireland: derelict and flooded by ceaseless rain. A baby is born to The Kid in Yellow and T, the daughter of The Earlie King. When T dies in childbirth, the Kid tricks the King, steals the baby and goes on the run. But now the Earlie Boys are on the warpath… Reminiscent of Peaky Blinders, Quentin Tarantino, Samanta Schweblin, Blade Runner, George Saunders, and Tom Waits, this is something entirely new in Irish fiction. The recipient of a number of bursaries, Danny has written for The Irish Times, Irish Examiner, and RTÉ’s…

Date: September 17 @ 5:30 pm
Time: 5:30 pm
Venue Station House Theatre
Address: Station House Complex

Fleeing from Famine in Connemara: James Hack Tuke and His Assisted Emigration Schemes in the 1880s Between 1882 and 1884, the English Quaker and philanthropist, James Hack Tuke, assisted nearly 5,000 people, mainly families, to emigrate from Connemara: paying for their passage and arranging for their settlement in Canada and the United States. The objectives of the Tuke Fund was to remove the surplus population and create viable holdings for those who remained, and initiate a chain migration. Initially, the Tuke Committee provided the funding in 1882, but realised the magnitude of the task and in 1883 and 1884 secured government financial assistance for the schemes. Despite opposition, Tuke felt…

Date: September 18 @ 12:00 pm
Time: 12:00 pm
Venue Clifden Library
Address: Market Street

Book Launch: Fourth Floor Flat 44 Cantos by Terry McDonagh Terry McDonagh has published 10 poetry collections, as well as letters, drama, prose and poetry for young people, and his work has been translated into Indonesian and German. His most recent poetry collection is Lady Cassie Peregrina (2016); his poems have been included in Fire and Ice 2 for the Junior cycle, and in the Galway Poetry Trail at NUIG. In 2017 he was director of WestWords in Hamburg, Germany’s first Irish literature festival. Admission €5

Date: September 18 @ 2:30 pm
Time: 2:30 pm
Venue Station House Theatre
Address: Station House Complex

Poetry Reading with Joan McBreen, Geraldine Mitchell and Ryan Vine and Music by Brian Parsons Joan McBreen has published five collections of poetry, the most recent being Map and Atlas (2017). In 2014, she produced a CD The Mountain Ash in Connemara – Poems by Joan McBreen, with composer Glen Austin and the RTÉ Contempo String Quartet, and a broadside The Mountain Ash, with printmaker-artist Margaret Irwin West and printmaker Mary Plunkett. Originally from Sligo, she now divides her time between Tuam and Connemara. Geraldine Mitchell’s most recent collection, Mountains for Breakfast, was published in 2017. Geraldine is Dublin-born but now lives on the Co. Mayo coast, near Louisburgh. She…

Date: September 18 @ 4:30 pm
Time: 4:30 pm
Venue Station House Theatre
Address: Station House Complex

Nuala O’Connor lives in Ballinasloe, Co. Galway. Her fifth short story collection Joyride to Jupiter was published by New Island in 2017; her story ‘Gooseen’, about Nora Barnacle, recently won the UK’s Short Fiction Prize and was published in Granta. Nuala’s fourth novel, Becoming Belle, is published in September 2018. Becoming Belle is a witty, inherently feminist novel set in Victorian London, based on the true story of a woman ahead of her time. In 1887, Isabel Bilton is the eldest of three daughters of a middle-class military family, growing up in a small garrison town. By 1891 she is the Countess of Clancarty, dubbed ‘the peasant countess’ by the…

Date: September 18 @ 5:30 pm
Time: 5:30 pm
Venue Clifden Library
Address: Market Street

Lara Bozabalian is the author of The Cartographer’s Skin and Tourist, a spoken-word poet, and an impassioned teacher. She has featured at literary festivals across Canada, in Singapore, and at TEDx (‘Sharing Passion Through Poetry’). She writes of teaching life and the voices often relegated to corners; after the school shootings in Parkland, Florida, her poem on Rattle’s ‘Poets Respond’ went viral. Out of the Ordinary is Galway-based Moya Roddy’s debut poetry collection. Shortlisted in 2017 for the Hennessy Award, her poems have been published in The Irish Times, Stoney Thursday, Crannog and Boyne Berries. Her short story collection, Other People, was long-listed for the Frank O’Connor Award, and novel…

Date: September 19 @ 4:30 pm
Time: 4:30 pm
Venue Station House Theatre
Address: Station House Complex

Michael Coady was born in Carrick-on-Suir, where he still lives. A long-standing friend of Clifden Arts Festival and Aosdána member, he has won a number of literary prizes and awards for poetry and prose at home and abroad. Michael’s most recent book is Given Light, integrating poetry, prose and photographs. Poet and critic Fred Johnston has recognised his work as ‘quite extraordinary in its depth of humanity, concern, and simple, almost casual elegance...’ Poet Leanne O’Sullivan is from the Beara Peninsula in West Cork and was educated at UCC. She has published four collections with Bloodaxe Books – Waiting for my Clothes (2004), Cailleach: The Hag of Beara (2009), The…

Date: September 20 @ 11:00 am
Time: 11:00 am
Venue Station House Theatre
Address: Station House Complex

Patricia Coughlan and Lucy Collins – Echoes Into Silence: Recovering Irish Women Poets Irish women play an important role in the contemporary poetry scene, yet their predecessors – especially women writing before the 1960s – remain little known and largely out of print. Among them are many vibrant and provocative voices, innovative in their own time and relevant still today. Patricia Coughlan and Lucy Collins will explore work by some of these women, and discuss the impact of their loss on our poetry tradition. Patricia Coughlan is Professor Emerita of English at UCC. She writes on Irish and Irish-American poetry and fiction, with a focus on gender and women’s writing.…

Date: September 21 @ 5:30 pm
Time: 5:30 pm
Venue The Clifden Bookshop
Address: Main Street

A Lifetime Long Ago: Book Launch by Mary Hughes The story of two women from different worlds, each on a journey beyond their comfort zone, this is A Lifetime Long Ago, the first book by Clifden native Mary Hughes. Mary grew up in the town in the 1970s and 1980s, the eldest of four children. After finishing Clifden Community School in June of 1989, she moved to the UK, where she met her husband. In 2001, Mary, Paul and three-year-old Amy moved back to Ireland, settling in Newbridge in Co. Kildare. In 2002, Owen came into the world and made the family complete. Although Mary says she is ‘no storyteller’,…

Date: September 22 @ 4:30 pm
Time: 4:30 pm
Venue Station House Theatre
Address: Station House Complex

Reading with Doireann Ní Ghríofa and Music by John Sheahan Doireann Ní Ghríofa is a bilingual writer. Among her awards are the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature, a Seamus Heaney Centre fellowship, the Ireland Chair of Poetry bursary, the Michael Hartnett Award, and most recently, the Ostana Prize (Italy). Her fifth book, a bilingual selection of poetry titled Lies, will be published in October. Scríobhann Doireann Ní Ghríofa as Gaeilge agus as Béarla araon. Ar na gradaim a bronnadh uirthi tá Duais Uí Ruanaigh do Litríocht Éireannach, Comhaltacht Seamus Heaney (Ollscoil na Banraíona) agus Duais Liteartha Ostana (An Iodáil). Foilseofar Lies cnuasach dátheangach léi, um Fhómhair. John Sheahan was a…

Date: September 23 @ 3:00 pm
Time: 3:00 pm
Venue Station House Theatre
Address: Station House Complex

Edited and Compiled by Karen and Sinéad Mannion Hidden in a cupboard under the sink for over a quarter of a century lay a collection of essays long forgotten. Enter the world of a precocious teenager growing up in 1980s rural Ireland. These stories are made all the more poignant because their author, in spite of having a life-limiting illness, illuminates his incredible mind. Gearóid P. Mannion passed away at 21 but his legacy lives on in this funny, heartfelt, warm collection of essays written when he was a teenager – his shining light will never go out. All proceeds of this book go to Muscular Dystrophy Ireland. There is…

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