Monday, May 30, 2011

Voices of Poetry 2011

One of our best events every year is Voices of Poetry, a seemingly infallible formula for an evening, when pupils and staff read out their and others' poetry in a variety of languages. Mr Swift has run it for three years now, following on from Mr John Fanagan, who started it inspired by the example of his friend Adrian Poole at the Exeter International Summer School. 

Last night we had another excellent event, with 25 renditions of poems in an hour. Olivia Plunket opened with a translation of a poem by Marina Tsvetaeva ("I like it that you're burning for me") which Igor Verkovskiy read in Russian last year; later, Daria Tischenko read another poem by the same author in Russian. Sadhbh Sheeran read her own poem 'My World'. She was followed by Brendan Dickerson (Latin), Niccolo Morabito (Italian), Maria Coloma (Spanish) and Dena Al-Hamdan (Arabic). Samuel Clarke read his Junior Poetry Prize-winning entry 'His World' very effectively.

Representing the English Department, Mr Jameson read Lawrence Ferlinghetti's version of a Prevert poem, 'Breakfast' (click here for French and English versions). He was followed by Shannen Keogan (Irish, by Sean O Riordain) and Joanna Tottenham (French). Our Head of Modern Languages, Mr O'Shaughnessy, currently a student of Polish, followed, and also Fleur Pay (her own poem 'Hunters in the Snow', winner of the Snowbound Tuckshop Voucher 2010), Sofia McConnell (Swahili), Rab Sheeran (Hindi), Muqtadir Shah (Urdu) and Sainiya He (Chinese - a poem by Mao Tse-Tung).

Poems in English concluded the evening - by Penny Nash, Amelia Shirley (reading Rumi's 'The Guest House'), Dr Stone (Wilfred Owen - 'The Next War'), Opeline Kellett (this year's Senior Poetry Prize winner - see 'Descriptions') and John Clarke (his Poetry Aloud entry, 'The Alligator Girls' by W.S. Graham). Carl Ibe, Senior Prefect, also read in German. Mr Swift's piece de resistance was his recordings of I formers reading poems several years ago: they are now about to sit their Leaving Certificate.

Congratulations to all readers, and to Mr Swift, on another thought-provoking, moving, relaxing and interesting evening.

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