2013-09-30 15:38:30 - Budding poets across Limerick and further afield are being urged to put pen to paper and demonstrate their pride of place as part of the Year of the Gathering.
The Gathering Poem initiative, which is being described as a crowd-sourced poetry experiment, is open to anyone around the world who has a familial association with Ireland. People are being urged to contribute four lines of poetry via The Gathering Poem website, www.thegatheringpoem.com.
Each submission will be judged by an editorial panel. The best submissions will be published as a completed poem online as well as in book form. This volume will be presented to the President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins, in December 2013.
Mary Killeen Fitzgerald, Gathering Limerick Coordinator commented: “2014 is a milestone year for Limerick with the City becoming Ireland’s first National City of Culture. As part of the build-up to this initiative and to celebrate the
wonderful achievements of communities the length and breadth of Limerick in organising Gatherings events this year, the Limerick Gathering Team would encourage anyone with an association with Limerick to consider participating in this poetry project. It doesn’t matter if you’ve never written a rhyme or haven’t looked at a poem since you were in school, everyone who has an association with Limerick or indeed, Ireland has an equal claim to take part, no matter your level of writing experience.”
Elaine Walsh, the creator of The Gathering Poem said that the immensity of the public reaction to the passing of Seamus Heaney demonstrates the Irish people’s enormous affection for poetry. Ms. Walsh added: “What better way to mark the age-old link between verse and the Irish people than writing a few lines of your own. Contributions do not have to rhyme or coincide with any rigid poetic form. The joy is in taking part and making yourself heard.”
More than 120 Gathering Limerick festivals and events have so far taken place during 2013 with a further 40 more events to be held during the final three months of the year.. Events scheduled to take place during the coming weeks include the John Enright Castleconnell Flycasting Festival (11-13 Oct), Legends International Tag Rugby Festival (25-26 Oct), Limerick International Fashion Design Week 2013 (29 Oct-1 Nov), and Richard Harris International Film Festival (6-8 Dec). The local Programme of events is being coordinated by the Limerick Gathering Team at City Hall.