James Connolly’s New York at Cooper Union May 12, 1916

For anyone who might be interested,  I have this official bootleg of the James Connolly essay, “Let us Free Ireland!” that I had the honor of reading last night at Cooper Union, from the same stage where Connolly himself spoke in 1902 and on the centenary of his death. Unfortunately it cuts off toward the end but you get the gist I think. The full text is available here:


Huge thanks to Susan McKeown for organizing this wonderful Festival.

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Savage Kids of Dublintown at Brooklyn Public Library

Get your pre-Patrick’s Day fix of Irish litt.

This Saturday March 5th, 4pm.

Brooklyn Public Library

10 Grand Army Plz, Brooklyn, New York 11238

savages bpl step

Four Dublin-born writers present the recipe for a classic Irish childhood: one part poverty, one part sexual repression, one part evil teachers. Add a fistful of salt and serve with a side of black humor. Then emigrate. Kevin Holohan, Honor Molloy, Maeve Price and Michelle Woods read from their works and share selections by Maeve Brennan, Maura Laverty, Patrick McCabe, Flann O’Brien, and James Joyce.

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12.15.15 IAW&A Salon: An abundance of talent, heart and Christmas cheer

Irish American Writers & Artists

By Karen Daly
Photos by Cat Dwyer


Marni Rice

The late December Salon at the Cell has quickly become a holiday tradition for members and guests who know there will be an extraordinary array of talent and heart as well as abundant IAW&A-style Christmas cheer. Curated and co-hosted by Honor Molloy and John Kearns, the program began with Marni Rice performing a haunting original accordion composition.

joeJoseph Goodrich

Playwright, actor and expert on mystery writing, Joseph Goodrich then showed his tender side with the story “The New Boy,” a reminiscence of Christmas in a small Minnesota town, circa 1970. Funny and poignant, Joe’s tale prompted smiles and tears.

kevinKevin Holohan

Kevin Holohan brought to life Lar Lawrence and Con Conway, two electricians escaped from his novel The Brothers’ Lot. Quintessential Dubliners, Lar is the straight man and Con, the one convinced that not only is the glass half empty…

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Nothing like a bit of Beckett to cut the Patrick’s Day treacle – March 14

As you might already know, I am never wholly comfortable with the tourist board clichéd paddywhackery that often attends St. Patrick’s Day.  So what better way to mark these rejoicings than a celebration of the least clichéd, least paddywhakerish Irish writer imaginable, Mr. Samuel Beckett?  We will be airing some of his prose works this coming Saturday, works that beg to be read out loud and, once heard, dispel the “difficult” reputation that tweedy academics would wrap him up in.  Details below.  If you are in around, would love to see you there.

 Beckett Out Loud with Kevin Holohan, Honor Molloy and Maeve Price

Saturday, March 14, 2015 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm
Central Library, Dweck Center

Admisssion FREE

Samuel Beckett was not only a modernist, he was a Dubliner. This is demonstrated by his insistence on language and the extremity of human experience found in his work. Kevin Holohan, Honor Molloy, and Maeve Price—all born and raised in Dublin—bring their voices to selections from Watt,MurphyMolloy, and some of the shorter works. Together, they reveal the music, humor and desolation inherent in Beckett’s work.


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Tales of Olde Williamsburg Chap XVIII

Sirrah! Prithee, where might I find a new codpiece?  As you can see I am quite undone.

You could try Put Yer Nuts In It on Driggs or Genital Confections on Berry. Then there’s The Cupping Guild on Bedford and N 9th or Totum Scrotum on Wythe or if you want a walk you can try The Olde Breukelen Hose Factorie over on Metropolitan Avenue.  There’s also…

…You are most kind Sirrah. I see this precinct is most amply provisioned.  Mercifully I did not question you for purveyors of ferret-flavored ales; I fear I would have been listening to you all day.

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A Seasonal Keats and Chapman Moment

With all due respect and admiration for the Keats and Chapman vehicle invented by Flann O’Brien aka Myles na gCopaleen, here is a seasonal offering:

Glutted on the over-indulgences of the festive season, Keats and Chapmen were enjoying a bracing and healthful tramp across the countryside when they were overtaken by surprisingly inclement weather with its attendant early darkness.  Spying a renowned country hotel nearby, they repaired thereto for shelter and an early dinner.  The dinner was exquisite, the service impeccable and the desserts left nothing to be desired, well, almost nothing.

“Gentlemen, may I offer you a little digestif, compliments of the house?” inquired the waiter solicitously.

“Why!  That is most kind!” exclaimed Keats who had already enjoyed most of the second bottle of Borgonne de Mueilly ’79 by himself.

“What a capital idea!  I have a hankering after a tot of the Fontenabra Quebro ’68,” said Chapman.

“Ah, I’m afraid Lady Quisling-Mulberry had the last of that on Christmas Eve,” replied the waiter, a little crestfallen.

“And well she might!  Fret not, a glass of the Quinta de Sobaco ’82 will serve just as well,” interjected Keats, eager to spare the waiter the pain of this embarrassing shortcoming.

“Alas, the proprietor will not stock the Sobaco since the incident with the ’76,” explained the waiter regretfully.

“Seems perhaps overly cautious and a little disappointing,” remarked Chapman a little tersely.

“Well a glass of the Shafts Floodgate Tawny ’77 will do the trick and let’s speak no more of it,” suggested Keats struggling to conceal his own mounting disappointment.

“I’m afraid we don’t have the ’77 but I am in a position to offer you a glass of the ’79,” ventured the waiter with growing trepidation.

“I will accept that suggestion in the helpful spirit in which it was offered and refrain from screaming at the top of my lungs that I would not use the ’79 to clean my boots,” snapped Chapman.

“Let us not sour the good spirits of the evening with all this quibbling.  A glass of the Norbesforth ’82 and we’ll say no more about it,” suggested Keats

“It pains me to tell you that our cellar boy stumbled into the shelf and left every bottle of the Norbesforth in a pungent pile of broken glass on the floor.”

“Well, confound his clumsiness!  Could you at least give us a Figueroa “83 and let us have done?” pleaded Chapman

“That I can certainly provide tout suite.”

“Fine.  Then it is settled,” sighed Chapman.

“One really mustn’t grumble,” added Keats, as the waiter left to fetch their order. “After all, any port in a storm.”

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The Thing About Christmas is…..

As a bonus gift for readers of The Brothers’ Lot, we are proud to present this second solstice-related seasonal spin-off in which Lar Lawrence and Con Conway, still in the employ of Brannigan Brothers, discuss the spirit of the Rare Aul Dublin Christmas while standing, yet again in Dublin’s Westmoreland Street.  You can refresh your memory of last year’s installment here https://thebrotherslot.wordpress.com/2012/12/20/it-never-really-feels-like-christmas-til/

Lar: It’s bitter cold.

Con: It is.  Mind you it is much colder in Nova Scotia this time of year.

Lar: It is, now?

Con: Oh yes.  And darker.

Lar: Is that a fact?

Con: Oh you wouldn’t believe how dark and dreary it can be.

Lar: Were you there?

Con: Jesus no!  You’d have to fly to get there.

Lar: Well, yes you would…

Con: …and what would I want to go spending nine hours in a plane only to end up in somewhere even darker than this place?  As if Christmas wasn’t bad enough without adding more darkness to it.

Lar: Ah now, in fairness…

Con: …all them feckin ads on the telly with everyone smiling and opening presents and sitting down to perfect dinners that look like they came from a hotel.  And them all enjoying one another and wearing new jumpers!  Well that’s all filmed in the early part of it.  You never see ads filmed around four o’clock on Christmas day, do you?

Lar: I can’t say as I’ve ever noticed but…

Con: …You never see anyone on ads asleep in the armchair with the lower dentures threatening to fall into his lap every time he breathes out. You never see the daughter of the house under the stairs drinking Harvey’s Bristol Cream by the neck or the son texting pictures of his presents to his friends with all of them tagged “another shite gift” including the phone he’s using to send the feckin things!!

Lar: Ah, I wouldn’t know I don’t watch that much…

Con: Terrible depressing time of year it is.  Wojus!  Can’t stand it!

Lar:  I suppose it strikes different people different ways.  Takes all sorts.  I suppose you’ll be skipping the Christmas party on Friday then.

Con: Are you mad?  Open bar and running buffet upstairs in Dillons of Little Crimea Street?  I’ll be there all right.  I already got one of those little screwdrivers with the interchangeable heads for me secret Santa gift.  Damn right I’m going.

Lar: Ah right.  Suppose I’ll see you then.  Here’s me bus.

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