Dunshaughlin Players and Tidy Towns make ‘Literary Pickings’.

Creativity to the fore in Poetry Town Dunshaughlin

Week of events to celebrate the spoken and written word

Poetry is underway and underfoot this week in Meath’s Poetry Town, Dunshaughlin. Amongst the organised treats are lines of poetry painted in five locations around the village, visible only after a shower of rain, when they appear as if by magic.

The local co-ordinator, Poetry Ireland’s ambassador in Dunshaughlin is Margaret McCann. She was involved with a previous event, 'Wander With Words', a trail of 38 poems posted around the village in April, and witnessed the pleasure the poems, old and new, brought to walkers who paused to read and enjoy them.

"Everyone was jaded, talking about vaccinations and restrictions and Covid issues, and the poetry trail brought us a whole new topic of conversation, many smiles and not a few tears," she says.

Due to Covid, this week’s Poetry Town performance events could not be live, and all have been pre-recorded and will be posted to the Poetry Ireland/Poetry Town website. There is a varied feast of Dunshaughlin talent: the local Brownies celebrate in poetry the fairy village they created, Imelda Breen’s Pilates in the Park brings wellbeing to a whole new level when performed to poetry intoned by Kieran Rushe, Aisling Rountree’s dance school, Addictedtodance, blends poetry and interpretive dance with stylish creativity. Dunshaughlin Players teamed with Tidy Towns for Literary Pickings, a lucky dip of recitals at local beauty spots, and Decades of Devotion captured the prayerful poetry of beloved, familiar hymns and the meditative Rosary.

During this week of poetry, local pharmacies and restaurants are distributing poetry cards, people can attend an online poetry workshop on Thursday 16th at 7pm and the village’s very own Poet Laureate, Orla Fay will reveal her specially commissioned poem about the village, in the company of other performers, in a reveal event organised by the Arts Office of Meath County Council.

"There is something for everyone’" says Margaret McCann. "We all have words, we all have poetry inside us. We maybe just need reminding."

At the invitation Dunshaughlin Players Drama Group, members of Dunshaughlin Tidy Towns Group participated in "walk-on parts" for a video entitled 'Literary Pickings' at locations throughout the village under the direction of creative geniuses John Kearns and Mary Tuite spearheaded by Margaret McCann, as part of the Poetry Week activities.

The video also includes episodes of poetry readings at those and other locations such as Dunsany Nature Reserve, Dunshaughlin Workhouse, Rathregan Cemetry, the 1798 Memorial Monument at Curraha and at a secluded oasis at Red Bog Road, all of which will be available to view online.