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Guest Blogs

A blog by Kate Dempsey

KATE DEMPSEY runs writing.ie's Poetic License blog and is our poetry guru. She is a writer and a blogger living in Maynooth. She writes fiction and non-fiction as well as poetry and is widely published in Ireland and abroad, in magazines, anthologies and on the radio. She fits this around her family and a full time job, writing on the sofa, on the train and in that little coffeeshop on the corner.

Poetry can be a solitary activity and she appreciates the support she received from the online community, particularly when starting out. She is excited about continuing the dialogue with her blog here.

You can follow Kate online, on Twitter and on Facebook.

Short Poems

Posted by Kate Dempsey on 16 June 2011.

Do you write short poems? Perhaps you want to venture into long poem territory, or share your short poems. Read on. I do tend to write fairly short poems. I do have some that go on to a second page, but they would be the exception. Sometimes I’ve got on to a rant and can’t stop. That doesn’t usually make for a good poem, it has to be said. Polemic is tough to do and...

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Irish Poetry Publications

Posted by Kate Dempsey on 16 May 2011.

Here is a partial list of publications in Ireland that take poetry. There are quite a few. This is part . I’ll do a part 2 soon but if you know some I’ve missed some, please let me know…. Generally I recommend buying and reading a copy of any magazine you are considering sending out to. Not only to judge if your poetry is a good fit, but also to help these journals keep their...

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Rhythm in Poetry – Deviations

Posted by Kate Dempsey on 22 April 2011.

So as soon as we know all about rhythm in poetry, we deviate. Of course we do. Not just through sheer bloody mindedness, but to use the effects on the reader. Pauses Poems are presented as lines on a page. (We’re talking about reading here, not performing. That for another day.) And the very fact that there are lines with and ending, lead the reader towards wanting to pause at the end of each line....

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Poetic Rhythm

Posted by Kate Dempsey on 10 April 2011.

Let’s get some of the basics of poetry down. Start with rhythm. What is rhythm in poetry? One definition is a musical quality produced by repetition of stressed and unstressed syllables. So much, so unpoetic. Rhythm varies with languages. For instance, Japanese doesn’t really have stresses but we’re dealing with English and Irish so we’re talking stressed syllables Let’s get some of the basics of poetry down. Start with rhythm. What is rhythm in poetry? One definition...

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Poetry Now Festival Sunday

Posted by Kate Dempsey on 31 March 2011.

I heard that Grace Wells won the Strong prize for her first collection When God Has Been Called Away to Greater Things published by Dedalus. Many congratulations and, again, a strong shortlist. I went to 4 o’clock reading. Actually I was late, not through any fault of my own for once. The traffic on the blue sky afternoon in Dun Laoghaire was completely snarled up and the car park full with a big queue so...

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Poetry Now Festival Saturday

Posted by Kate Dempsey on 31 March 2011.

Saturday at the festival started with a workshop lead by Fiona Sampson, a fine poet and editor of Poetry Review. The workshop was crammed to the gunnels with talented poets and it was good to meet them. But what competition! And all creeping up on the first collection milestone. Fiona went through a poem from each poet (would have been easier with copies) A couple of gems I wrote down and paraphrase: At the beginning...

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Poetry Now Festival Address

Posted by Kate Dempsey on 31 March 2011.

I went to quite a few events at the wonderful Poetry Now Festival and I thought I’d share my updates here.. I have already posted this on my blog emergingwriter The Canadian poet, Ann Carson gave the keynote address at the Poetry Now Festival on Thursday night. She was the first woman poet to win the TS Eliot prize. The theatre was packed to the rafters but only the gentle waft of disco drum and bass...

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Interview with Belinda McKeon, new author and curator of Poetry Now

Posted by Kate Dempsey on 23 March 2011.

Belinda McKeon has curated the dlr Poetry Now Festival since 2008. She is a writer and arts journalist. www.belindamckeon.com Hi Belinda. Welcome to writing.ie. Could you introduce yourself to the readers please? I’m a writer and journalist, and also the current curator of the dlr Poetry Now festival in Dun Laoghaire. How did you get into writing? The teachers at my primary school, which was Stonepark in Co. Longford, really encouraged us to read and to write stories,...

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Memorising your poetry

Posted by Kate Dempsey on 8 March 2011.

I am not good at memorising things. I forget lemons and toilet paper when I go to the shops. I forget my pin number. I forget what I forget. So I’m not good at memorising poems. But I try. Sometimes I send myself to sleep at night trying to remember my lines. (It would help if they rhymed) I do think that that handful of paper that inevitably, in my case anyway, falls or gets...

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What is Poetry?

Posted by Kate Dempsey on 20 February 2011.

I’ve been writing poetry for maybe 11 years now and I’m still wondering what exactly it is. It’s hard to define. I’ve read and heard some poems recently that made me question where is the line between an interesting and emotive story as a piece of prose or an amusing anecdote with parallels and a poem. If you Google “What is a poem,” (I just did) you get a lot of different answers and some...

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