MacIntyre Passes Away/Burns’ Statue – Poetry News Roundup November 1st

We end the week here on My Poetic Side with a look at the sad news of the death of the poet and playwright Tom MacIntyre. We also have a short article about the Boston statue of Robert Burns.

Tribute Paid to Late Poet and Playwright Tom MacIntyre

Tom MacIntyre, the Irish playwright and poet has passed away at the age of 87 after a long illness.

MacIntyre was born in 1931 in Co Cavan, and was perhaps most well known for his work in the theatre, in particular, The Great Hunger. This was a collaboration that received high acclaim that he worked on with the actor Tom Hickey and the director Patrick Mason. He has also written and published a number of collections of poetry as well as some short stories and a novel “The Charollais”. He also penned “Through The Bridewell Gate” which was an examination of the Arms Trial of 1970.

President Michael D Higgins led the tributes for the writer, calling his death a great loss to the world of performance and literature in the country.

MacIntrye had been a member of Aosdána for many years, and his work was characteristically courageous and original. He is known for pushing the boundaries not just for actors but also for the audience and the stage. This is one of the many things that made him such an important member of the literary scene.

A funeral mass will take place on 2nd November and this will be followed by a cremation service.

Tom MacIntyre is survived by his wife Celine and his five children; one of whom is from his first marriage.

Statue of Robert Burns Returned To the Back Bay Fens

Earlier this week, a group consisting of seven organisations in Boston came together to celebrate the reinstallation of a statue dedicated to Robert Burns.

The event was celebrated with songs, recitations and bagpipes in a ceremony that was reminiscent of the original ceremony of dedication that took place on 1st January 1920.

The event had a number of sponsors including the Boston Parks Department The National Trust for Scotland Foundation USA and the Fenway Alliance. Maureen McMullan, the Scottish singer performed two poems by Burns with musical accompaniment provided by local music students. There were recitations by two authors of some of Burns most well-known poems.

The statue of the poet which features Luath, his faithful dog was sculpted in 1920 by Henry Hudson Kitson and was originally placed in the Back Bay Fens where it was a neighbour to the monument to John Boyle O’Reilly the Irish poet that was created by Daniel Chester French. The placing of the two statues so close together was very deliberate and was meant to show the connection between Irish and Scottish literary traditions in a setting that was similar to those used in the work of both poets.

In 1975 the statue of Burns was moved to Winthrop Square. The fight to have it moved back to its original location has been a lengthy one, but those who were behind the fight are delighted that their work has come to fruition.

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