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Friends of Hopkins gather in Kildare

Gerard Manley Hopkins“I am in Ireland now,” Gerard Manley Hopkins laments in one of his ‘terrible sonnets’, reflecting on his baneful “life among strangers”. And yet, the many times he left Dublin to enjoy “the delicious bog air of Monasterevin”, Co. Kildare, the Jesuit poet was happy to acknowledge that he found himself among friends. How apt then that Monasterevin has hosted a Hopkins literary festival every summer since 1987. This year’s festival runs from 19 to 25 July. There will be lectures, readings, concerts, and receptions. Fergus O’Donoghue SJ will say the opening Mass; Joseph Feeney SJ will give a lecture; and Peter Milward SJ’s book, A Lifetime with Hopkins, will be launched.