June is going to be an exciting month for Clonakilty’s fans of The pSoken Wrod. The guest speaker at the June 2 meeting in de Barra’s Folk club is Ian Wild, playwright, novelist, composer and actor, famous for his award-winning play ‘Mrs Shakespeare’. Ian will present a selection of his work from 8.30pm onwards.
June 16 is celebrated worldwide as Bloomsday and in Clonakilty The pSoken Wrod and de Barra’s Folk Club will be similarly remembering Ireland’s most influential poet and novelist, James Joyce. ‘Ulysses’, considered to be one of the most important works of modern literature, tells the story of one day in the life of Leopold Bloom – Thursday June 16, 1904 — the year Joyce met Nora Barnacle. The day was first celebrated in Ireland in 1954, the 50th anniversary of the first Bloomsday, when writers Flann O’Brien and Patrick Kavanagh visited various locations in Dublin mentioned in the book.
Celebrations will begin outside Clonakilty Post Office on Bloomsday at 11.45 am. Suitably attired in period costume and straw boaters, if one wishes, the party will saunter down Pearse Street to de Barra’s where a hearty, Joycean breakfast of blue cheese, liver, kidneys and such will be provided. There will be readings from ‘Ulysses’; among the readers will be Hennessy Award-winning poet, Afric McGlinchey and poet Brendan McCormack (the brains behind the day). Printouts of extracts from ‘Ulysses’ will be available for those who wish to read a little Joyce and savour some extracts of the day, both literary and gastronomical.
De Barra’s itself has already won the ‘James Joyce Pub Award’ as an authentic Irish pub; a plaque outside bears the inscription ‘A good puzzle would be to cross Dublin without passing a pub’. The same might be said of Clonakilty.
The pSoken Wrod is indebted to Ray Blackwell, de Barra’s, Clonakilty and O’Neill’s Butchers who are sponsoring the Joycean breakfast.
Also in June, The Clonakilty Organic Arts Festival takes place from Friday to Sunday, June 19-21. Taking part in the many artistic activities planned for that weekend will be writers and poets from the pSoken Wrod – Friday June 19, de Barra’s Folk Club, 5-7pm and Saturday, June 20, the Emmet Hotel from 10pm onwards in the beer garden. For a full list of the participants see psokenwrod.blogspot.com. For a full schedule of the events visit Clonakilty Organic Arts Festival on Facebook and local press.