Fermanagh’s Women Aloud Part 4

Tonight we’ll wrap up our series of posts about the women participating in Women Aloud Fermanagh. We’re featuring our Secretary, Dianne Trimble (Ascroft) and our Assistant Secretary, Natasha Martin. We hope you are intrigued by the glimpse we’ve given you into our line-up for Women Aloud Fermanagh and will join us on Tuesday evening.


WA natasha_martin

Natasha Martin: Living and working in Co. Fermanagh, Natasha writes from the heart. She likes to appeal to a wide audience, and includes humorous anecdotes in her stories, and poignant emotion in her poetry. She has had both her fiction and non-fiction writing published, and was a founding member of MoPoSoGs (Monaghan Poets & Songwriters Group) before joining Fermanagh Writers in the Summer of 2013.

FLive Dianne2

Dianne Ascroft: She writes historical and contemporary fiction with an Irish connection. Her new series, The Yankee Years, is a collection of novels and short reads, set in World War II Northern Ireland. The history of her adopted country inspires the stories of the urban Canadian, who has settled in Fermanagh with her husband and an assortment of strong willed animals.

Fermanagh’s Women Aloud Part 3

There’s more yet. Let’s meet a few more of the women who are part of Women Aloud Fermanagh 2016: Teresa Kane, Antoinette Rock and Mary McElroy.


Teresa Kane: She has worked as a freelance journalist for BBC and for many years as a regional leader for Pushkin Prizes Creative Writing Trust. She has a long history of working with children in their poetry writing. Currently she is Principal in Magheralough Primary School, Trillick.

WA Antoinette Rock

Antoinette Rock: She had a great interest in words from an early age. She is an avid reader. In recent years she has dared to write a word or two herself.

FLive Mary

Mary McElroy: Mary lives in Enniskillen. She’s had work published in the Babble Anthology and in “Moment” from the Community Arts Partnership. In 2013 she won both the Babble Literary Festival Slam and the Regional Section of Funeral Services NI Poetry Competition. She is currently working on her memoir.

Introducing Fermanagh’s Women Aloud Part 2

Let’s meet a few more of the women who are part of Women Aloud Fermanagh: Monica Corish, Helen Daniel and Ruth Leonard.

WA Monica Corish

Monica Corish: Monica lives in Kinlough, Co Leitrim. She is an award-winning writer of poetry, short stories and memoir. She was 2014 / 2015 SPARK writer-in-residence at the Leitrim Observer. Her second full collection “A Dying Language” will be published by the Irish Hospice Foundation Press in May 2016. More details about her writing and her writing workshops can be found at www.monicacorish.ie.


 WA helen_daniel

Helen Daniel: She trained as a nurse and then moved sideways into mental health work. After exciting adventures in various arts and crafts, she has returned to her first love – writing. Egged on by fellow wordsmiths, she reflects, rants and eulogises about ‘life as we know it’.


WA ruth_leonard

Ruth Leonard: She writes poetry & cookery books. Originally from Dublin, she attends Fermanagh writers, which she enjoys thoroughly.

She is looking forward to her first poetry publication in the coming weeks, titled “Hope.”

Introducing Fermanagh’s Women Aloud 1

During the coming week we’d like to introduce you to the women who are part of Women Aloud Fermanagh on 8th March in Blakes of the Hollow, Enniskillen. Today we’ll meet Kate O’Shea, Jenny Brien and Diane Jardel.

WA Kate O'Shea

Kate O’Shea: She writes a wide range of poetry, for both page and stage, from snap shots and observations right through to strong conversation starters on issues such as mental health, illness and general life challenges.


WA Jenny Brien

Jenny Brien: She is a woman of transgender experience.

Her poems and short stories look for unexpected grace in strange and neglected places. Sometimes they find it.


WA Diane Jardel

Diane Jardel: She is a published poet finding inspiration in the nature world around her in Enniskillen. She been working as a poet/facilitator visiting rural schools during the past four years.

Meet Fermanagh’s Women Aloud Crew

During the coming week in several posts, we’ll introduce you individually to the women who are participating in Women Aloud Fermanagh 2016. But first let’s reveal some of the women who are part of this event.

Top row: Natasha Martin, Mary McElroy, Dianne Ascroft, Middle row: Ruth Leonard, Kate O'Shea, Helen Daniel, Bottom row: Jenny Brien, Diane Jardel

Top row: Natasha Martin, Mary McElroy, Dianne Ascroft, Middle row: Ruth Leonard, Kate O’Shea, Helen Daniel, Bottom row: Jenny Brien, Diane Jardel

Join Us For Women Aloud Fermanagh

This year for International Women’s Day on 8th March, WomenAloudNI, a zero-funded, voluntary provincewide project, has been set up to highlight the writing of women writers in Northern Ireland. This is their first year and they are organising at least one event in each county on International Women’s Day.
Fermanagh Writers is hosting this county’s event: Women Aloud Fermanagh 2016. The Fermanagh event celebrates the work of women writers but it’s not a women only event. Everyone is invited to attend.
We have a great line-up of women writers from Fermanagh (Fermanagh Writers’ group and other local writers) and the border region who will share their original stories and poems.
The writers include Monica Corish, a Leitrim poet and writing workshop tutor who has been the Featured Poet in The Stinging Fly; Diane Jardel, former Chair of Fermanagh Writers and a Community Arts Partnership tutor for their schools poetry programme, and Kate O’Shea and Teresa Kane, exciting local performance poets.
The admission fee is £1 and all proceeds will be donated to Fermanagh Women’s Aid. To open the evening, Mary McCann, the manager of Fermanagh Women’s Aid, will introduce the work of the organisation. 
Tickets can be purchased at Collage Co-op in the Buttermarket, from a member of Fermanagh Writers or at the door. We’d really like you to join us on 8th March. Come along and be spellbound by our stories and poems.

Get Them While They’re Hot!

Fermanagh Writers has taken to the streets to supply the growing demand for our new collection of our writing, Tavern Told Tales. Last Tuesday evening Fermanagh Writers’ Chair, Tony Brady, Assistant Secretary, Natasha Martin and another committee member, Bob Baird were spotted rooting in the boot of a car for copies of the book to supply those clamouring for it. Anyone who is still searching for a copy can email us and we’ll arrange to supply one. Our email address is: fermanaghwriters AT aol.com

FW Selling TTT


Kate O’Shea At One Ft Square Show

Congratulations to our member, Kate O’Shea, who has had one of her poems chosen to be displayed in the One Ft Square  Show at the Clinton Centre in Enniskillen this month.

Here’s a taste of the show from the Impartial Reporter: Click here.

Why not drop by and enjoy the eclectic arts show? https://www.facebook.com/events/1394991474137126/


New Release By FW Secretary

Ally-Final-KindleCongratulations to our secretary, Dianne Trimble, on the release of The Shadow Ally, the first Short Read in her The Yankee Years series. The series will be a mixture of Short Reads and novels set in Second World War Fermanagh. She has also released the third Short Read in the series, Keeping Her Pledge, and the second book will be released early in the new year. Each book is an individual story so Book 3 can be read before the forthcoming Book 2. She is writing the series under her maiden name, Dianne Ascroft.

The Shadow Ally: In June 1941 America is not yet at war but the country is preparing for it – this includes secretly building a flying boat base in County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland. When Fermanagh girl Ruth Corey finds a letter her journalist boyfriend, Harry Coalter, has written, discussing details of the airbase’s construction, she fears he plans to disclose information that will destroy America’s neutrality and land him in serious trouble. Ruth enlists the help of a guest at her family’s hotel, attractive American civilian contractor Frank Long, to help her stop Harry. Can Ruth safeguard this military secret and protect her beau? Or must she make a difficult choice?

Thoughts on Point of Absence

An Appreciation by Tony Brady

In the recent All Ireland Poetry Slam Final, held in Blakes of The Hollow, watering place and home of Fermanagh Writer’s, Poet Teresa Kane was placed in the final three competitors. My personal view, and no reflection on the excellent judges, polemics delivered by the first and second contenders won  over poetry – otherwise Teresa would have gained first place.

Teresa Kane
Teresa Kane – a Member of Fermanagh Writers – is a poet who finds inspiration in the natural world and its ever changing  presence. She communes with nature, transposing her reflected emotions into verse, fixing them in poetry on the pages for the reader to savour. Her humanity is mirrored in her poems and attributes of her unique character pervade: elegance, taste, goodness, kindness of heart. Throughout her poems there is a consistent thread of empathy with stillness and movement: water, light, air and seasonal change abound, blended together in an harmonic sense of the moving power of music.
This  unpublished Collection  – Point Of Absence – provides a variety of  experiences signified by  sensations of separation caused by death  of  loved ones and significant others  against a background of  rural  life and  family situations.  Teresa conveys the connectivity of absence as: “Gossamer threads that have ribbonned  through generations.”  The Dressmaker.  Another  poem recalls a deliberate absence by a water bird:  “ You left the flock to feather your own nest.” There is acute observation in the lines – “I watched , waiting in the rhythm of your stillness.” Porcelain Eggs.  A permanent absence of a dead uncle who danced at weddings is cherished as “the dance ends on an arpeggio – a staccato note.” A Heavy Coat.


The poet’s inner life is glimpsed in the poem: A Surrendering. Lines associated with such simple tasks as lighting a turf fire – “Each sod smoulders in memory layer by layer, it surrenders smoke secrets into the sky of a slow half moon.” The task “..speaks poetry; pitched words banked in wisdom”. In Ancient Child the cost of a bartered for alabaster doll is not an imagined exchange of emblems: the moon, the sun and the stars, rather maternal emotion “In the end the currency I used was love; loose coins falling golden into the safe hold of my soul.”

Each of the poems display variations in mood, tone and pace. Free verse is the favoured form. Sometimes, a poem is a series of questions. For example Voice. “Am I still? Am I an echo in time? Is that where I am?”  Elsewhere, as in Limited Travel it is completion: “I have travelled through time; I have walked barefooted; I have skimmed my wings and I have lived off berries. ” By contrast, there are imperatives, as in Wake Me.

Your range is quite impressive: it reaches easily across natural perspectives and into personal human depths of sentiment, emotion and introspection. Your voice, as expressed in this selection, I have read it more than several times, is quiet, restrained, at times commanding, but always controlled. Echoes of past experienced places are vividly presented.

The sensual tone in some of the poems borders effectively on the erotic sensations that inspire your poetry. The shared experience in those areas holds the reader’s attention, because the power of suggestion rather than explicit description attracts rather than repels. This is the secret of conveying an erotic sense and vision.
Your ability to vary the pace of narrative is a definite strength. You can also contain more than one effect in short poems.  You have an affinity to landscape and possess a skill for conveying its atmosphere and it earthly characteristics. Every now and then a sense of your spiritual and mystical awareness informs your poetry.

Lastly your poetry shows your ability to recall past experience and recast it to move the reader in the present moment.


Overall, the Collection entitled – Point of Absence – compels this reader writing an Appreciation, to compare and contrast the work with established poets such as Seamus Heaney and Patrick Kavanagh, simply because of their geographical proximity and Teresa Kane’s  deference to their inspiration and influence. Even so, her own words are the best conclusion:

“Find old words, barnacled onto
the richness of stone. Drop them
one by one into waters still with secrets.
I will listen as ripples unfold back
onto themselves.”  The Dance.