Back to reality from Dublin on Thursday, an excellent reading, listening to all gathered in Chapters of Parnell Street. I love the themed readings, this one being Sun, Sand and Ice Cream, because it pushes you out of your normal reading choices and can sometimes urge you into writing about things you'd not considered before.
Most poets managed to link in the sun and the sand, in their readings, without too much stretching the framework. Good to hear the Galway contingent, Aoife & Celeste, who unfortunately had to turn around and head back to Galway. I bought their chapbook, Smoke & Skin, available from Lapwing, Belfast. I snuck in the ice-cream, reading the one posted below about Our Family. I cheated a wee bit on the sun, getting in a long poem that I wrote in June about boobs. It was its first outing ever at a reading and went down surprisingly well. Inspired, in part, as a riposte to Alan Gillis's 'The Lad,' I would post it, but it's under consideration at present. Fingers crossed, eh?
I went on a mini book-buying spree in Hidges Foggis, buying Mick Imlah's 'The Lost Leader,' one I couldn't get back in June, for love or money; a selected of John Hewitt, a selected of Michael Longley and the recent short story collection by Claire Keegan, 'Walk the Blue Fields.' I read the first story set in Achill in the Heinrich Boll cottage (and laughed), whilst sitting on the grass in Stephen's Green - a little hard to imagine the sunshine of Thursday against the storm-lashed day that's outside now! I've since read the opening poems of Imlah's - bloomin 'eck. Great stuff.