Illustrated talk by Phil Cope - The Oldest Music

Celebrating poetry inspired by our sacred springs and holy wells

Venue: Hay Castle Clore Learning Space
Following writer and photographer Phil Cope's last packed-out visit to Hay with his illustrated introduction to the living wells of Wales, he is now returning to introduce his latest wellspring publication, The Oldest Music / Y Gerddoriaeth Hynaf / An Ceoil is Sine.

This book celebrates the poetry inspired by Welsh and Irish sacrecd spring and holy well sites, and their often incredible tales. The poems in The Oldest Music range between our earliest-known works by Gwynfardd Brycheiniog [born c.1170], Lewys Glyn Cothi [c.1420-90] and Ieuan ap Rhydderch [c.1430-1470], as well as contemporary responses by Angela Graham, Tony Curtis, Seamus Heaney, Dafydd Williams, Cathal Searcaigh, Julian Cason, WB Yeats, Phil Carradice and Phil Cope, himself.

"Poetry is one of the most powerful tools we have for the expression of our feelings. and the wellsprings of both Ireland and Wales have from earliest times inspired, confused and angered our writers".
(from the book's Introduction)

Phil Cope's "evocative photographs of wells in Wexford and Pembrokeshire are little works of art in themselves / the sort of beautiful object you might well turn into an offering, a gift of thanks for helping you see things better, to understand the world a little more clearly".
(from Jon Gower's Western Mail review)

The Oldest Music is the first in a series of five small trilingual volumes linking Wales with Ireland through the responses of our painters, printer-makers, story-tellers, poets and photographers (as part of the Ancient Connections Project). It is published in Wales by Parthian.
Phil Cope Talk The Oldest Music