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  • Writer's pictureJohn Dempster

Author event with poet Aoife Lyall

At our April meeting, we had a heart-warming and interesting evening with Aoife Lyall.


She read poems from her first collection Mother Nature (Bloodaxe 2021), her second The Day Before (Bloodaxe, to be published 2024), and the third, which she's currently working on, and she briefly described the context and inspiration for each one.


Aoife's poetry is tender, encompassing a range of emotions and tracing the varied and sometimes difficult experiences of motherhood and family life. She spoke about capturing the fleeting, everyday moments that feel so special but can easily be forgotten - for example, in 'While the others are away', she is peeling potatoes, sitting on the floor with her infant son, who is entranced by this ordinary activity, and who carefully takes each peeled, cut piece of potato and plops it into the pot.


During the second half of the meeting, we heard about Aoife's journey to recognition and publication, submitting work to magazines, awards, competitions and publishers, and her advice was inspiring: be confident about your own voice and preferred subject matter; get out there to share your work wherever, whenever you can; respond to poets you admire, tell them and support what they do; be open to opportunities to collaborate with others if you get the chance. And if you write poetry, don't be afraid to call yourself a poet.


Penelope Hamilton




t magazines, awards, competitions and publishers, and her advice was inspiring: be confident about your own voice and preferred subject matter; get out there to share your work wherever, whenever you can; respond to poets you admire, tell them and support what they do; be open to opportunities to collaborate with others if you get the chance. And if you write poetry, don't be afraid to call yourself a poet. Penelope Hamilton

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