16 February 2017


First highlights announced for

Poetry Day Ireland 2017

27 April 2017

Highlights include: A Facebook Live poetry reading with some very well-known faces; a tasty chocolate themed poetry competition; Pillow Poems; Poems In Your Pocket; readings, performances and events across the country including a special surprise for commuters in Pearse St station in Dublin, a poetry trail and so much more.


In 2015 Poetry Ireland established Poetry Day Ireland, a major one-day festival of Irish poetry at home and abroad.  Poetry Day Ireland includes flagship live literature events and educational activities programmed by Poetry Ireland, alongside a support network of promotional tools and resources for organisations and individuals who wish to produce their own events or get involved in other ways. Poetry Day Ireland has grown from strength to strength and last year saw events held in cafés, arts centres, libraries, bookshops, schools, hotels, night clubs, bars, and street corners across the country.

Today some of the highlights of Poetry Day Ireland 2017 were announced. The full programme will be announced in the coming weeks.

Poetry Day Ireland 2017 will take place on Thursday 27 April with the theme ‘Poetry Connects’ and will include a mix of high-profile events in major arts venues, as well as many smaller events at community level in libraries, schools and cafés. Some 2017 highlights will include:

-          A lunchtime poetry reading on Facebook Live

Poetry Ireland and Facebook Ireland will broadcast a lunchtime poetry reading on Facebook Live on 27 April featuring some very well-known faces. Full details to be announced in the coming weeks.

Watch it live on https://www.facebook.com/poetryireland.eigseeireann/ or https://www.facebook.com/facebookdublin/.

-          A day of poetry events at Poetry Ireland’s new premises at Parnell Square

To include a seminar on the buisness of poetry (for poets), typewriter poems on the doorsteop with Lewis Kenny, the award ceremony of the prestigious Ballymaloe International €10,000 Poetry Prize in association with The Moth, the launch of Colette Bryce’s Selected Poems and a reading with Scottish poet Don Paterson.

(Thursday 27 April 1pm-10pm, Poetry Ireland, 11 Parnell Square East, Dublin 1, Free entry)

-          DART commuters can enjoy great poems on poetry posters across the DART fleet for two weeks from 24 April. Presented by Poetry Ireland with the generous support of Iarnród Éireann. There will also be a free poetry and music performance at Pearse Station during the evening rush hour on Poetry Day Ireland, which will include songs by Leonard Cohen and Bob Dylan.

(DART posters from 24 April; Performance, Thursday 27 April 5-6pm, Pearse Station, Dublin)

-          Guests of the luxury hotel Group, The Doyle Collection will be in for a treat on Poetry Day Ireland. “Pillow Poem” cards will be placed in all hotel rooms at turn-down at each of their hotels including Westbury (Dublin), The River Lee (Cork) and The Croke Park (Dublin), as well as the group’s hotels in the UK and the US. The poems featured will be selected from Poetry Ireland’s recent All Through the Night (edited by Marie Heaney) and Everything to Play For: 99 Poems About Sport (edited by John McAuliffe) anthologies, both of which were generously supported by The Doyle Collection.

-          Poetry Ireland and Butlers Chocolate Cafés are teaming up again to give a taste of some great coffee and chocolate-themed poetry. On 27 April pop into any one of the 19 Butlers Chocolate Cafés around the country and select a free, beautifully presented poetry card to take away and cherish, in addition to your free delicious chocolate treat. Poetry Ireland and Butlers Chocolate Cafés are also inviting poets (young and not so young) to submit poems for a special Poetry Day Ireland 2017 competition. The theme of the competition is open, but poems should mention either chocolate, coffee or the Butlers Chocolate Experience. The winning poems in the adult and children’s categories will be printed on a poetry card for distribution in all 19 Butlers Chocolate Café branches on Poetry Day Ireland, and other prizes include a one-to-one poetry clinic with Colette Bryce at Poetry Ireland, tickets to all of the poetry events at a selection of literature festivals, and family passes to the Butlers Chocolate Experience and factory tour.

To enter the competition see www.poetryday.ie. The closing date for entries is Friday 24 March 2017.

(Butlers Chocolate Cafés in Cork, Dublin, Dublin Airport, Galway & Limerick, Thursday 27 April).

-          From the start of the Easter Holidays until Poetry Day Ireland, visitors to Fota Wildlife Park in Cork will be able to pick up a Poetry Trail Map, and enjoy some great, family-friendly poems about the animals and trees at Fota. The map will also include a selection of prize-winning poems from the Poetry Day Ireland and Fota Wildlife Park Schools Poetry Competition. To enter the competition, primary school-aged children can pick any species of animal, plant or tree that is under conservation at Fota Wildlife Park and write a poem about it! Entry details are at www.poetryday.ie, and the closing date is Friday 16 March 2017.  
(Fota Wildlife Park, Saturday 8 April – Thursday 27 April, Poetry Trail Map free with entry to the park).

-          RTÉ lyric fm will launch Poetry File, the station’s new weekly poetry slot presented in association with Poetry Ireland on Poetry Day Ireland. Poetry Ireland will also take over the www.rte.ie/culture homepage for the day. (RTÉ lyric fm and rte.ie/culture, Thursday 27 April).

-          The Linenhall Arts Centre in Castlebar presents an evening themed around Poetry Ireland’s recent anthology Everything to Play For: 99 Poems about Sport.

Bringing together some prominent sporting people, poets and writers to read their favourite poems from the anthology, the event will reflect on the links between sport and the arts in Irish life.

(Thursday 27 April 8pm, The Linenhall Arts Centre, Castlebar, Co. Mayo, Tickets €10).

-          In Cork, award-winning poet Leanne O’Sullivan will lead a lunchtime event of poetry and rap with students participating in the JCSP and Poetry Ireland WraPParound project along with creative writing students from University College Cork.

(Thursday 27 April 1pm, University College Cork, Free entry).

-          For early birds, poet and athlete Alvy Carragher will lead a 5km Poetry Run with poetic pitstops around central Dublin. More details to follow.

(Participation is free, or pay €10 and receive a bespoke poetry t-shirt).

-          The Dromineer Literary Festival and Nenagh Arts Centre are presenting a joint poetry reading by British spoken word poet Martin Figura and Bloodaxe-published poet and visual artist Helen Ivory.

(Nenagh Arts Centre, Co. Tippearary, Thursday 27 April 8pm, Tickets €10).

-          Hambly & Hambly, a unique gallery and multi-purpose arts space for the North West, will host a special reading by poet and author Maria McManus, to celebrate Poetry Day Ireland. The reading will take place alongside an exhibition of work from artists including Cathy Carman, Claire Falconer, Susan Mannion, Michael Hoy, Di Henshaw, Simon Carman and Matthew Gammon, and the Northern Irish book launch of Ruth Le Gear’s new art book, Water Senses. (Thursday 27 April 7pm, Hambly & Hambly, Dunbar House, Magheradunbar, Enniskillen).

-          Limerick City Gallery is presenting the opening of Reconstructing Memory by Clea Van der Grijn and The Graeve Collection by poet and performer, Dr Oscar Mascarenas, with a special poerformance/poetry reading marking Poetry Day Ireland. (Thursday 27 April, 6pm)

-          The Cúirt International Festival of Literature in Galway and Strokestown Poetry Festival in Roscommon will present poetry events to celebrate Poetry Day Ireland, as will The Dock, Carrick-on-Shannon, West Cork Literary Society, AT The Edge Cavan, Cork County Libraries, Dublin City Libraries, Highlanes Gallery, Drogheda, Waterford County Council, the Verbal Arts Centre, Derry, Limerick Writers Centre, Solstice Arts Centre, and many more.

-          Poetry Ireland will distribute Pocket Poems to venues, libraries, bookshops, promoters, and anyone wishing to get involved in Poetry Day Ireland. Pocket Poems are 12 different mini cards, each featuring a different “Poetry Connects” themed poem. You can pick up your favourite Pocket Poem, pass it on or share it on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram using the hashtag #PoetryDayIRL.

-          Schools can also get in on the action on Poetry Day Ireland with a range of classroom resources for primary and secondary schools. 

For more see www.poetryday.ie