Having spent the first 15 years of my life in Magherafelt I was delighted to learn of the upcoming On Home Ground Poetry Festival which will take place in the town in September.
I will subsequently leave the north coast to return to my home soil on September 20 and am looking forward to immersing myself in the rich variety of poetry readings, talks and artwork exhibits which have been organised for the event. At the helm of the festival is a couple continually praised for their passion and indeed knowledge about poetry – Eugene and Gerardine Kielt.
Heralded by national press for his unique and informative tours of ‘Heaney Country’, Eugene has earned a top reputation for inspiring guests to Laurel Villa with his passion for poetry, including some of the speakers at the festival and both are renowned for creating an unforgettable experience for writers and writing enthusiasts at their beautiful guesthouse.
The On Home Ground Poetry Festival will subsequently see a plethora of poets, artists and writers take up residence to celebrate local art and those who create it. The weekend extravaganza was to be officially opened by Nobel Laureate, Mr Seamus Heaney, a frequent visitor to Laurel Villa Boutique Guest House, where the festival is being held.
As I write this post however, I have just heard that Seamus Heaney has sadly passed away… Northern Ireland has lost a great poet but he leaves behind an equally great legacy. RIP.