Cork's weekly poetry event. This month's guest readers are Stephanie Conn, Simon Lewis, Matthew Caley, Jo Slade, Linda Ibbotson and Sarah Byrne. Guest readers are followed by an open mic.
Monday 5 June: Stephanie Conn and Simon Lewis
A former teacher and graduate of the MA programme at the Seamus Heaney Centre, Stephanie Conn won the Yeovil Poetry Prize, Funeral Service NI prize and the inaugural Seamus Heaney Award for New Writing. Her first collection, The Woman on the Other Side is published by Doire Press and was shortlisted for the Shine/Strong Award for best first collection. Her pamphlet Copeland’s Daughter won the Poetry Business Pamphlet Competition and is published by Smith/Doorstep.
Simon Lewis was the winner of the Hennessy Prize for Emerging Poetry and the runner up in the Patrick Kavanagh Poetry Award in 2015. He also featured in Poetry Ireland’s Introductions Series the same year. He has been shortlisted for the Shine/Strong Award, Listowel Poetry Prize, Strokestown International Poetry Prize and Bridport Prize and received commendations in the Gregory O’Donoghue prize and Dromineer Literary Prize. Simon’s first collection, Jewtown, was published by Doire Press in 2016. simonlewis.ie
Monday 12 June: Matthew Caley
Matthew Caley‘s Thirst [Slow Dancer, 1999] was Nominated for The Forward Prize for Best First Collection. Since then he’s published four further collections, including The Scene of My Former Triumph [Wrecking Ball, 2005], Apparently [Bloodaxe, 2010] and Professor Glass [Donut, 2011], which were featured on BBC Radio 3’s The Verve. His most recent collection is Rake [Bloodaxe, 2016] and he’s taken the book ‘on the road’ reading at Ledbury, Aldeburgh, Stanza, Galway, Brighton, Bristol, Swindon, South Downs, Cambridge, Durham, Paris Lit Up and Novi Sad, Serbia amongst many other places – including a crypt, The Gypsy Hill Tavern and Wayne Holloway-Smith’s living room. He’s addicted to square brackets.
“It is the sense of play that makes the poems so striking … colloquial enough to keep you reading, complex enough to keep you uncomfortable … the reader is aware of something strange and beautiful” – Emma Hammond, Poetry London
Monday 19 June: Jo Slade
Jo Slade, poet and artist, has published five collections of poetry and two chapbooks of poems. The Painter’s House (Salmon Poetry, 2013), was joint winner of the Michael Hartnett Poetry Prize 2014. The White Cottage, an installation and chapbook of poems, took place at The Sailor’s Home, Limerick in 2016.
Jo’s other collections include In Fields I Hear Them Sing (Salmon Poetry, 1989), The Vigilant One (Salmon, 1994), which was nominated for The Irish Times/Aer Lingus Literature Prize, Certain Octobers (Quimpeir, 1997), City of Bridges (Salmon, 2005) and The Artist’s Room (Pighog Press, 2010). Jo also exhibits her paintings widely.
Monday 26 June: Linda Ibbotson and Sarah Byrne
Linda Ibbotson is a poet, artist and photographer from the UK, currently residing in Co. Cork. Her poetry has been published internationally including in Levure Litteraire, Enchanting Verses Literary Review, Irish Examiner, California Quarterly, Live Encounters, Eastern World (with her artwork) and Fifty Ways to Fly, also read on radio and performed in France by Irish musician and actor Davog Rynne.
Linda’s painting Cascade featured as the cover of a cd and a selection of her paintings and photographs are published in Fekt. Linda was invited to read at the Abroad Writers Conference in Lismore Castle and in Butlers Townhouse, Dublin. She writes the blog Contemplating the Muse.
Sarah Byrne was born in Cork. She studied criminology and currently works in the field of restorative justice. She writes poems and her work has appeared in Poetry Ireland Review, Prelude & other journals. She was the recipient of an Arts Council bursary for her writing in 2016. She is the editor of The Well Review and is edging slowly towards a first collection of poetry (?, 2025).