For the children in all of us, Once Upon a Place is a must read. Launched last Monday in Iveagh House, Stephen's Green I was so honoured to be there and to be part of the anthology. With its synergistic blend of outstanding poets and short fiction writers, stunning artwork by PJ Lynch and the publishing expertise of Little Island, it is definitely greater than the sum of its part and can only be a winner.
The brain child of Eoin Colfer, Laureate na nÓg, in his introduction he writes that ‘ with every word you read you will be transported to various places around Ireland where magic is as warm and golden as the summer sun.’ And he’s not making it up.
There are magical stories and poems of place by Eoin himself. Derek Landy. John Connolly, Seamus Cashman, Siobhán Parkinson, Marie Louise Fitzpatrick, Sarah Webb, Enda Wyley, Pat Boran,Mark Granier, Roddy Doyle, Paula Leyden, Oisín McGann, Jane Mitchell, Kate Newman, Jim Sheridan and there I am plonked in the middle of such illustrious company.
As if that wasn’t enough, when I climbed the very fancy stairs of Iveagh House not only did I have the pleasure of meeting, Eoin, PJ Lynch and his son Sam, but PJs illustration of my poem ‘Snail Pals’ was framed for all to see alongside Kate Newman’s’ How to Feed a Stranger’s Donkey’.
I have no doubt but we all suffered from a most welcome writer's cramp as we sat conveyor-belt style and signed for all we were worth.
Thank you to all who were involved in the creation of this beautiful book, all at Laureate na Óg, Children’s Books Ireland, Little Island and Poetry Ireland. An anytime present for young and old.