Jane Clarke interviews, books of the year & poem features
INTERVIEW WITH JANE CLARKE ON RTE RADIO 1’S COUNTRYWIDE
CountryWide, RTE Radio 1, Saturday 6 June 2020, 8.05am
Jane Clarke was interviewed on RTE Radio 1’s farming and rural life programme CountryWide on 6 June. She was talking to Ella McSweeney as they went for a walk together in the hills close to Jane’s home in Glenmalure. She spoke about how her memories of growing up on a farm in Roscommon were unlocked when she started to write in her forties, and about how she hopes that people will hold on to the new-found respect for the environment and nature that has emerged during lockdown.
Jane read the first poem she ever wrote – ‘Daily Bread’ from her debut collection The River - and also ‘Kelly’s Garden’, the final poem in her 2019 second collection When the Tree Falls, which names the fields of her family farm in Roscommon.
Jane grew up on a farm in Co Roscommon, but left for Dublin when she was 17. Many of her poems draw on images of the natural world and on the landscapes of Roscommon and Co Wicklow, where she has lived for the past 20 years. The recent feature she presented for BBC Radio 4 saw her walking the 19km Miners’ Way through the valleys and mountains of Wicklow.
Listen via RTE Radio Player here. It's a separate podcast illustrated with a photo of Jane in her kitchen.
Leeds Irish Music Program, ELFM (East Leeds FM), Tuesday 2 June 2020, 6.30-7.30pm
East Leeds FM has teamed up with the Irish Music Foundation in Leeds to begin a series of four radio shows focusing on Irish music/culture in four regions of Ireland. The first show is featuring Sligo, Mayo and Roscommon.
Jane Clarke spoke about growing up on a farm in Co Roscommon, and how she found herself drawing on that experience many years after leaving the farm when she began to write poetry in her forties. She read her poems ‘Copper Soles’ and ‘Camping at Bearna’ from When the Tree Falls.
NEW POEM ON RTE RADIO 1'S THE POETRY PROGRAMME
The Poetry Programme: Poems in a Pandemic, RTE Radio 1, Monday 1 June 2020, 1.30pm
Jane Clarke and Kerry Hardie both read new poems on this very moving special edition of The Poetry Programme broadcast on Ireland’s Bank Holiday, 1 June.
Both poems were written in April, and are included on Manchester Writing School’s WRITE where we are NOW website, which gathers together poems written in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
Jane Clarke’s ‘First Earlies’ was written in Glenmalure on 21 April 2020.
‘On Bank Holiday Monday, at 1:30 pm on 1st June, Olivia O'Leary presents a selection of poems from poets responding to the Covid 19 crisis in Poems in a Pandemic: a Poetry Programme Special.’
Kerry features at 15:09 and Jane at 22:58.
Arena, RTE Radio 1, Tuesday 19 May 2020, 7-8pm
Jane Clarke was interviewed on Arena, RTE Radio 1’s week-nightly arts and popular culture show, about her second collection When the Tree Falls, which is on the three-book shortlist for the Pigott Poetry Prize 2020.
In a very moving interview, Jane spoke to Sean Rocks from her home in Glenmalure. She read and spoke about her poems ‘In Glasnevin’, ‘That I Could’ and ‘Respects’ – all from When the Tree Falls. She ended by reading a new poem – long worked on, but only just completed – ‘The Key’.
Sean Rocks asked Jane why she thought that people have been turning to poetry during the coronavirus pandemic.
‘I think it is something about the intensity and distillation of a poem. A poem is like music, it goes straight to the heart, and I think that’s what people want at the moment.’
The interview has been posted as a separate item on Arena’s webpages, where it is also available to download as a podcast, here.
A link to the whole programme is here.
Beautiful half-hour BBC Radio 4 feature presented by Irish poet Jane Clarke. She reads 'Birthing the Lamb' from When the Tree Falls, along with a new sequence of poems. The Miners' Way was chosen by Antonia Quirke for her Pick of the Week of 3 May on BBC Radio 4, beginning with Jane reading her poem 'Birthing the Lamb', followed by a clip from the end of the programme.
‘Irish poet Jane Clarke lives in Glenmalure, a remote and rugged valley in County Wicklow, Ireland. The valley marks the start of the Miners' Way, a long-distance path developed by a local community group, traversing three Wicklow valleys, Glenmalure, Glendalough and Glendasan, and taking in six old, disused mine sites. The Miners' Way has inspired Jane to write a sequence of poems responding to this rich natural and cultural heritage. As she walks the Miners' Way, Jane meets some of her neighbours - local historian Carmel O'Toole who shows her one of the old mining buildings, farmer Pat Dunne who tells her how sheep farming in the valleys has changed over the years, and mountain leader Charles O’Byrne who knows the area like the back of his hand. She also visits Robbie Carter, one of the few people who can talk first-hand about working in these valleys in the mining industry, which came to an end in 1957. Now in his 80s, Robbie became a miner at the age of 16. He describes his life as a miner in the mid-20th century and the story of a fatal mining accident in January 1957 when a workmate died. Robbie was seriously injured and never worked in a mine again. The poems in the programme by Jane Clarke include ‘Birthing the Lamb’ from her 2019 collection When the Tree Falls. All other poems are new works inspired by the landscape, heritage and stories of the Miners’ Way.’
The programme will be available until 8 June 2020. Listen here: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m000htr0
ARTICLE BY JANE CLARKE IN THE IRISH TIMES
Jane Clarke wrote about the Miners' Way of Glenmalure, Glendalough and Glendasan in The Irish Times of 1 May ahead of her BBC Radio 4 feature. Her article is here. It includes one of the new poems she has written especially for the programme. You can hear Jane read this poem on the Words Lightly Spoken podcast. Click here to listen.
PODCAST RECOMMENDATION FOR WHEN THE TREE FALLS
Slightly Foxed podcast episode 13, online 15 November 2019
Episode 13 of the Slightly Foxed podcast explores nature writing with Jay Armstrong, founder and editor of Elementum Journal, and author Juliet Blaxland.
‘This collection of poetry weaves around the death of her father… It’s just so simple, but hugely poignant and very strong writing.’ – Jay Armstrong, recommending When the Tree Falls on the Slightly Foxed podcast
Click here to listen. Jay recommended Jane Clarke’s second poetry collection When the Tree Falls at 34.34.
[24 April 2020]