Recipe For a Pretty Much Perfect Poets’ Gathering: Poetry Now Festival 2010

Makes 4 (days filled with inspiration, wit and great conversation)

1 sunny-ish spring weekend in Dun Laoghaire
1 convenient venue with cute black round tables for author signings
a perfectly-sized programme with wonderful poets from Ireland, the UK, Albania, Mexico and the US
a very appreciative audience, most of them creative souls themselves
a handful of smiley volunteers armed with important-looking questionnaires
plenty of enthusiasm, energy, emotion, thoughts, humour and history
a double dose of stories and insights about ourselves and the world we live in

Pick out a nice and sunshiny weekend of your choice in Dun Laoghaire. Add in a good-sized venue, first trimming off any unnecessary bits like a noisy bar at the back. Use a tried and tested formula of well-known and emerging poets from Ireland and various other countries. Make sure they all get on well and are having a great time before mixing them at the venue. Assemble an audience full of poetry enthusiasts who don’t mind travelling a bit to get to the event. Entertain them with readings, talks, workshops, signings and casual chats with authors between the events and later at the bar. Sprinkle on a reasonable number of volunteers to ensure that expectation and experience of the festival are well-aligned. Don’t forget to infuse everyone with genuine smiles and an appreciation of the manifold forms of creative expression that is poetry. Add a double dose of stories and thoughts on the human existence. Finish off with moments of genuine amazement and admiration and, for added effect, top off with a much-loved nobel prize laureate. You’re done, now enjoy the perfect poetry festival!

If you’d like to try this recipe for yourself next year, do visit


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