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Kilkenny Arts Office Rhyme Rag Ensemble established as a result of the Rhyme Rag, an online poetry journal for Kilkenny’s young writers

The Kilkenny County Council Arts Office is proud to present Mark my Words, a new collection of poems by the Rhyme Rag Ensemble, a group of young Kilkenny writers.
Mark my Words is edited by the award-winning Dublin poet, Colm Keegan and features beautiful art-work by Kilkenny-based illustrator/designer, Steven Aylin.

The Rhyme Rag Ensemble was set up in 2017 to nurture Kilkenny’s community of young writers and to enhance the stability and future of the Rhyme Rag, online poetry journal, The Rhyme Rag was established by the Kilkenny Arts Office in 2005 and went online in 2015. Young writers in Kilkenny are invited to submit their poems for consideration and feedback from an editor. Two new poems are published every month at alongside powerful illustrations by Alé Mercado.

In a partnership between, the Kilkenny Arts Office and Ossory Youth, the Rhyme Rag Ensemble, aged 14 – 19 years, meet monthly with professional writers for writing workshops and talks. They also participate in local and national events such as the recent Culture Night.

Speaking about the experience, Kilkenny’s Arts Officer Mary Butler said, “Insightful and raw, dark in places and then light-filled, this collection reveals the talents of the next generation of Kilkenny writers. Culminating in a searing group poem, We are Kilkenny Young Writers, this collection is a testament to each writer’s journey from tentative first submission to their own print publication on the bookshelves of Kilkenny bookshops. This has been a hugely rewarding experience for everyone involved and epitomises our mission in the Kilkenny Arts Office; to have Kilkenny people express themselves through and enjoy, art.”

Speaking about the process that led to Mark my Words, poet Colm Keegan said, “It’s been a real privilege and joy to spend time working with Kilkenny Young Writers and I would like to thank them all for their commitment to this project. We wrote together each week, exploring the work and styles of others that inspired us, we shared ideas about project development, structure, editing, and curation – each meeting bringing us closer to our intended goal, the production of Mark my Words, their inaugural publication.”

Mark my Words, priced at just €5 is available in all Kilkenny bookshops and at the Kilkenny Arts Office.

Follow @Kilkennyarts office & @rhymerag for regular updates and new poems.