Fiona O’Rourke

In July 2021 I was delighted to take part in a 6-week course organised by the Irish Writers Centre entitled ‘Northern Soul‘ and facilitated by Fiona O’Rourke. 

Fiona is a supportive and encouraging workshop leader and I was appreciative of the amount of extra material she provided to all of us by way of regular emails.

Fiona introduced me to a number of writers and poets with whom I wasn’t yet familiar.

The workshop was a safe space to discuss the difficulties and challenges many writers and poets face when attempting to write about experiences in the North of Ireland. 

I certainly came away from Fiona’s course with an injected sense of ‘permission’ to write more freely and I am excited to see where that will lead.

Fiona O’Rourke’s short stories have been published, broadcast, and translated. Her debut novel was a joint winner at the Novel Fair 2016. Since earning an MPhil in Creative Writing (TCD, 2015), she has facilitated courses in community, libraries and festivals, and provided mentorships for individuals. Her former students have gone on to be longlisted, shortlisted, and to win awards in competitions with work kickstarted on her courses.

You can read Fiona’s work or contact her at Fiona O’Rourke’s Website

Yes, I See Your Name

~ Fiona O’Rourke ~

Yes, I see your name.
Three initials scar a desk
undeniable just confess
the only O name in that mess.
Half tough, half in love, apostrophe relish
catastrophe cherished in frown hard skin
you rescue orphans from last line gallows
gooseberry same with punch drunk vowels
safer trouble in a crowd.

Yes, I see your name.
Words languish this day,
sloth drop on an average page
you have no heart to fully hate.
Covid drought burnt out fireplace fodder
would be no bother to spark the lot
those hell raisers whisky chasers flying solo
knee deep trouble with no crowd.

Yes, I see your name.
Insta love is twenty-four seven
Twitter shit and HateBook heaven
vamp juicy lines til desert dry.
An empty hovel once your novel
keeps a peeled eye in the dark
marinated no hardship wasted
crowd surfs into the lonely crowd.

Reprinted courtesy of Bangor Literary Journal

The Bangor Literary Journal generously offers you this wonderful free pamphlet, which includes the work of twelve female writers from Women Aloud NI, including ‘Yes, I See Your Name’ by Fiona O’Rourke, to celebrate International Women’s Day 2021.

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