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Staff at Saint Luke’s mark Poetry Day

Dr Maeve O’Reilly

Dr Maeve O’Reilly

Staff at St Luke’s Radiation Oncology Network recently held special readings of their favourite poems in the garden of the Rathgar hospital to mark Poetry Day Ireland.

Among those who participated were Palliative Clinical Nurse Supervisor Barbara Hamilton who read two extracts from Khalil Gibran’s, The Prophet:

While Dr Maeve O’Reilly who is also part of the Palliative Care team read Denise Blake’s poem, And They All Lived Happily.  In outlining why she chose the poem, Dr O’Reilly explained that its gentle reflection on the blurred lines between truth and fiction in parenting rings even more true for her now that her own children are grown up:

All bad guys died in the end.  My kiss did make bruises better.  It was right to put lost teeth under a pillow  and that time, when you didn’t find money,  there really was a tooth-fairy holiday…………

The idea to hold and film the poetry readings was the brainchild of the St Luke’s Arts Co-ordinator Ema Staunton who initially asked staff to pick out pieces that had meaning and resonated for them: 

“Feedback from staff has been very positive, the readings were very uplifting. It was a very enjoyable project.”    As a committee member of the Irish Arts and Health Co-ordinators, Ema, also helped to pick the final selection of poems from the Menu of Poems – the short anthology of poems selected and published specifically for patients and staff in healthcare settings for Poetry Ireland Day recently: “Some lovely conversations were sparked with patients as I handed out the poems. We left copies for patients to enjoy in all three of the Saint Luke’s sites in Rathgar, St James and Beaumont.”