Celebration of Hopkins' work


Celebration of Hopkins' work
By Ryan Dunne ryan@leinsterexpress.ie @laoisnews

The Annual Monasterevin Hopkins Festival takes place on the weekend of July 29 and 30, at Moore Abbey, celebrating the life and work of Gerard Manley Hopkins.

Hopkins (1844 – 1889) was an English poet, Roman Catholic convert, and a Jesuit priest, whose posthumous fame established him among the leading Victorian poets. His experimental explorations in prosody and his use of imagery established him as a daring innovator.

The festival begins on Friday, July 29, with the inaugural lecture taking place at 7.30pm by Dr R.K.R. (Kelsey) Thornton, co-editor of The Collected Works of Gerard Manley Hopkins.

Then at 8.30pm, in the Moore Abbey Concert, local singer Emer Dunne will sing from her wide repertoire including a selection of classical, contemporary, gospel, and traditional.

Saturday’s packed schedule begins at 10am with a lecture by Ms Niamh Brown on ‘Hopkins’s Energetic Anxiety’, before Dr Anne-Marie Millim gives a lecture on ‘Productive Emotion in Hopkins’s Diary’ at 11.30am. After lunch, at 2pm there will be a lecture from Professor Brian Cosgrove on ‘From Dawn to Dusk: Versions of Nature in Hopkins and Thomas Hardy’.

After this paper, depart for Monasterevin House, where Hopkins spent vacations as a guest of the Cassidy family, for a poetry reading by Richard Halperin.

Then at 4pm, participants will be invited to read their favourite Hopkins poem, before the festival concludes at 4.30pm with a poetry reading by Kate Dempsey and Paddy Bushe.