A poem for Ireland on RTE

The shortlist for A Poem for Ireland has been revealed, interesting and as predicted poets to be found. The website has a list of the poems along with a little, Leaving Cert type analysis with audio and videos with brilliant archived materials with poet’s bio. This is a great initiative, it might just reinvigorate some people into reading poetry again but it definitely shows off the amazing genius of poets that we have in Ireland. Whatever slant you take it from, you will get something from it.


On Television, RTÉ Television’s flagship arts show The Works (Fridays, 8.30, RTÉ One) will feature mini-documentaries on two of the poems each week. And each week, you’ll be able to listen to ordinary people from offices and workplaces across Ireland reacting to each of the 10 poems on RTÉ Radio One’s The John Murray Show (weekdays, 9a.m., RTÉ Radio One)

The website says the public have 6 weeks to decide on their fave, they don’t give a date but I’ve worked that out to be around the first week of March.

I am going to be looking at each poem briefly along with some other bloggers and we will pick our favourite.

Rick O’ Shea, presenter of new poetry show is not into Seamas Heaney

Yes, you have read it correctly. Rick O’ Shea, who I am not overly into as a broadcaster is to present a new poetry show on RTE Radio 1 on 24th January. He seems to be into his reading. He read 100 books in a year, which is impressive and I am jealous but he doesn’t really read poetry or know much about it. He admits this himself.


He didn’t interview for the job, RTE approached him and he claims he is interested in arts programming in general.

I am sure there were competent presenters who also love and know poetry well available in Ireland. “In fact, the commission specification, which was on the RTÉ website, stated that the show was to be “presenter-led, preferably by a well-known and/or well-regarded figure from the world of poetry and/or literature. He/she should have an in-depth knowledge of Irish poetry and an established ability to further the debate on poetry via the national airwaves.” The budget for the 30 half-hour shows is €76,440.”

I will probably watch it anyway as there seems to be some well known and up and coming poets on the show but it reminds me of the show when Pat Kenny was interviewing Pete Doherty. #embarrassing

Let’s hope Rick O’ Shea starts reading his poetry. He has a week.