Terry McDonagh, poet and dramatist, writing about the Raftery Returns Festival in Live Encounters Magazine.
In the week, September 26th to October 3rd we will be celebrating the life and work of the blind poet, Anthony Raftery, of Cill Aodáin (Killedan), Kiltimagh. Previous generations kept the memory of the poet alive and now it’s our turn to honour his life and work. We will begin by symbolically returning him to his birthplace when a group of cyclists will travel the one hundred kilometres from Raftery’s grave to Cill Aodáin, Kiltimagh where he will be paraded through the streets in style.
Visitors will be welcomed and treated to a whole week of events that include creative writing workshops in English and Irish. Readings with writers Colette Nic Aodha, Gabriel Fitzmaurice, Ger Reidy, Terry McDonagh and others. Tertulia bookshop will provide us with a pop-up bookshop for the week. Publisher Alan Hayes of Arlen House will talk about publishing. There will be open-mic sessions and a poetry competition with a first prize of Euro 500-00. In addition, the winning poem will be unveiled, as part of a poetry trail, on March 30th 2022 (Raftery’s birthday). There will something for everyone: talks, music in pubs, a concert with Sean Keane, creative writing in schools, theatre and a literary walk through the townland of Cill Aodáin.
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Courtesy of Live Encounters.