But first Crannóg 30 had to be launched. The Crane Bar upstairs room was almost full and eleven of those featured in the magazine were present, ready to read their offering to the knowledgeable audience.
Our host was Tony O'Dwyer, pictured above, one of the editors and he welcomed everyone and pointed out that Crannóg was celebrating its tenth year of publication. The launch of the next issue will see some celebration of those ten years.
The readings were good. The usual variety in theme and style and great delivery. The many readings, open mics mean that rarely now do you hear a poor delivery of a poem or prose piece.
Two stories were read, both with a theme of loss, both wonderfully crafted, one from a father's point of view, one from a mother's. Elizabeth Brennan's Holly starts The last time Matt saw Holly was the morning of the day she died. A great start, telling us a lot but leaving so much to be filled in.
Susan Dumars had a topical poem about the band leader on the Titanic. His name was Wallace Hartley and Susan's poem was a gentle meditation on the catastrophe and immortality.
Longer than the screams, the prayers, . . . we will hear your song.
The readings ended with a poem by Jarlath Fahy which would have fitted in well in the Battle of the Books satire competition in the Trim Swift Festival next week-end. I thought of signing him up for our team but that might make the Meath Writers Circle even more annoyed. His poem Sceptic Tank (no typo there) took a swipe at a number of targets including the eurozone crisis and the "septic tank tax".
I read my Bluebell Wood poem and introduced it as one of those Where the hell has my life gone poems. Reading aloud is a great test of a poem. you can feel as you read if it works or not. This one worked well.
A very enjoyable evening. Some discussion on reading aloud, editing and some reflections on the joys of editing a magazine. I didn't stay for the Ocean Race week-end.