2015 Events


Cork Spring Poetry Festival

Download 2015 print brochure.



All ticket bookings should be made directly with
the Cork Arts Theatre 021-4505624


Wednesday * Thursday * Friday * Saturday


Wednesday, 11 February


Victoria KennefickVirginia AstleyBook launch: Fool For Poetry chapbooks
by Victoria Kennefick & Virginia Astley.
2.30PM. Venue: Cork City Library

Admission: FREE.


The Munster Literature Centre established the Fool for Poetry Chapbook Competition in 2005. At this event competition winners Victoria Kennefick (Ireland) and Virginia Astley (UK) will read from their début chapbooks published by Southword Editions.

Victoria Kennefick won the Red Line Book Festival Poetry Prize in 2013 and is shortlisted for the Melita Hume Poetry Prize 2014 judged by Emily Berry. Now living and working in Kerry, she is a member of the Listowel Writers' Week committee and co-coordinator of its New Writers' Salon, as well coordinating the recently established Kerry Women Writers' Network.  

Virginia Astley is a songwriter and musician who from a young age has appreciated the process of writing, often working things out by writing them out. Her collection Solvitur Ambulato was published in The New Writer earlier this year.



Michael SchmidtLecture: Publishing Irish Writing by Michael Schmidt
3 - 4PM. Venue: University College Cork, 2.12 O'Rahilly Bldg.

Admission: FREE.


Michael Schmidt is Managing and Editorial Director of Carcanet Press, and the general editor of PN Review.  A Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, Michael Schmidt was awarded an OBE in 2006 for services to poetry. He is the author of many books—of poetry, fiction, non-fiction, and literary criticism—including Lives of the Poets (1998) and The Novel: A Biography (2014).  At the School of English Research Seminar, Michael will introduce a discussion on the topic of publishing Irish writing. The event is therefore of particular interest to published and aspiring writers.



Irish Examiner

Irish Examiner Poems reading
4PM at the Farmgate Café, English Market.

Admission: FREE with purchase of a beverage.

A reading by selected poets published in the Irish Examiner.

The Munster Literature Centre has been working in conjunction with the Irish Examiner to publish weekly poems by contemporary writers, with generous financial support by the Farmgate Café. This reading will showcase work by recent contributors.


Grace WellsShoshanna WingateGrace Wells & Shoshana Wingate
7PM. Venue: Cork Arts Theatre

Admission: €8 full price / €6 concs.

Poetry reading by writers from Ireland and Canada.

Grace Wells, formerly an independent video and television producer in her native London, moved to Ireland in 1991. Her debut poetry collection, When God Has Been Called Away to Greater Things (Dedalus Press, 2010) won the 2011 Rupert and Eithne Strong Best First Collection Award and was short-listed for the London Fringe Festival New Poetry Award.

Shoshanna Wingate is a writer originally from South Carolina, who now lives in Sackville, New Brunswick. Her first poetry collection, Radio Weather, is published by Vehicule Press (Montreal). In 2011, she published a chapbook of poetry, Homing Instinct, with Frog Hollow Press. Her debut collection of poetry will appear in 2014 with Vehicule Press. 


Gabriel RosenstockStiofan Ó CadhlaGabriel Rosenstock & Stiofán Ó Cadhla
8.30PM. Venue: Cork Arts Theatre

Admission: €8 full price / €6 concs.


Bilingual poetry reading in Irish and English, made possible with the support by Poetry Ireland.

Gabriel Rosenstock, a member of Aosdána, is the author/translator of over 160 books, including 13 volumes of poetry and a volume of haiku in Irish and in English, as well as numerous books for children.

Stiofán Ó Cadhla is Head of the Department of Folklore in UCC. Published two collections of poetry, An Creidmheachach Déanach (Coiscéim 2009) and Tarraing na Cuirtíní, a Dhochtúir (Coiscéim 2012). Winner of the Michael Hartnett Award 2012.


Martina EvansPoetry FilmMartina Evans & screening of In the Hands of Erato*
10PM. Venue: Cork Arts Theatre

Admission: €8 full price / €6 concs.


Martina Evans is an Irish poet, novelist and teacher based in the UK. She grew up in County Cork in a country pub, shop and petrol station and is the youngest of ten children. She is the author of nine books of prose and poetry. Martina’s fourth poetry collection, Facing the Public was a TLS Book of the Year in 2009 and won the Premio Ciampi International Prize for Poetry in 2011. Her most recent collection is Burnfort, Las Vegas (Anvil, 2014).

Straight after Martina Evans’ reading, Liz O’Donoghue will introduce her film In The Hands of Erato made in 1999/2000. The film features a selection of Cork poets living and dead reading their poems at scenic locations around the city. Among the poets are Patrick Galvin, John Montague, Aine Miller, Michael Davitt, Theo Dorgan, Louis De Paor and Thomas McCarthy. The film is 30 minutes in duration so this programme slot will run longer than originally planned.

*Due to personal reasons, Dave Lordan will not be attending the Cork Spring Poetry Festival 2015 as previously scheduled.


Thursday, 12 February


Sandra Ann WintersThe Place Where I Left YouBook launch: The Place Where I Left You
by Sandra Ann Winters
2.30PM. Venue: Cork City Library

Admission: FREE.


Sandra Ann Winters won the Gregory O'Donoghue prize in 2011, and is returning to Cork to launch her debut full-length collection from Salmon Poetry. Winters is an American poet, and frequent visitor to Ireland. From 1986 to her retirement in 2010, she served as a lecturer of English and Irish literature at Guilford College in Greensboro, NC. She is author of a previous poetry chapbook, Calving Under the Moon (Finishing Line Press, 2013).   


Penny DreadfulPenny Dreadful Magazine focus
4PM. Venue: Cork City Library

Admission: FREE.


A reading by selected poets published in the Penny Dreadful.

The Penny Dreadful magazine was founded by two Cork writers, John Keating and Marc O'Connell. Its readership has grown quickly, and recent projects also include a Halloween-themed writing competition, and publication of Blood Oranges, a debut collection by Dylan Brennan. This event will include readings by recent contributors and a discussion with the magazine's founders.  http://thepennydreadful.org/


Poetry BusPoetry Bus Magazine focus
7PM. Venue: Cork Arts Theatre

Admission €5 or free with magazine purchase.


A reading by selected poets published in the Poetry Bus.

Poetry Bus was founded by Peader O'Donoghue, having originally began as a weekly online writing exercise. The magazine is co-edited by Peader and Colette O'Donoghue, and has recently published its first 'grimoire' by Fíona Bolger. This event will include readings by recent contributors and a discussion with the magazine's editors.  http://thepoetrybusmag.wix.com/change


Peter SirrEnda WyleyPeter Sirr & Enda Wyley
8.30PM. Venue: Cork Arts Theatre

Admission: €8 full price / €6 concs.



Gallery PressThe appearance in this festival by Peter Sirr is under the auspices of Gallery Goes, a regular Gallery Press initiative funded by the Arts Council Touring Grant.


Peter Sirr is a freelance writer and translator. Awards include the O’Shaughnessy Award for Poetry, 1998 and the Michael Hartnett Award, 2011. The Gallery Press has published nine collections by Sirr, including his latest The Rooms (October 2014).

Enda Wyley has published four collections of poetry with the Dedalus Press: Eating Baby Jesus (1994), Socrates in the Garden (1998), Poems For Breakfast (2004) and To Wake to This (2009). Borrowed Space: New and Selected Poems is due from Dedalus in September 2014.


Michael O'LoughlinMichael SchmidtMichael O'Loughlin & Michael Schmidt
10PM. Venue: Cork Arts Theatre

Admission: €8 full price / €6 concs.



A reading by Irish and UK poets.

Michael O’Loughlin was born in Dublin in 1958. His poetry collections are Stalingrad: The Street Dictionary (Dublin, Raven Press, 1980); Atlantic Blues (Dublin, Raven Arts Press, 1982); The Diary of a Silence (Raven Arts Press, 1985); Another Nation, New & Selected Poems (Dublin, New Island Books, 1994/UK Arc Publications, 1996); and In This Life (New Island Books, 2011).

Michael Schmidt, born in Mexico City, is a poet, a novelist, a translator, and an academic. He has written more than 15 books, including five collections of poetry, the latest of which, New and Collected Poems, was published in 2009. His work showcases his extensive breadth of knowledge, often drawing from a multitude of disparate sources ranging from Homer to Boris Pasternak. Schmidt is the founder, editor, and managing director of Carcanet Press Limited and general editor of PN Review. He is currently professor of poetry and convener of the creative writing program at the University of Glasgow (UK).


Friday, 13 February


Munster Poets in TranslationClíona Ní RíordáinBook launch--Jeune poésie d'Irlande: Poètes du Munster 1960 - 2015 (Editions Illador)
2.30PM. Venue: Cork City Library

Admission: FREE.


Bilingual poetry reading in French and English from the Éditions Illador anthology Jenue poésie d'Irlande: Poètes du Munster 1960 - 2015.

This anthology is edited by Clíona Ní Ríordáin, who lives in Paris and teaches at the Université de la Sorbonne Nouvelle. She is also editor of Four Irish Poets / Quatre Poetes Irlandais (Dedalus, 2011); and of Femmes d'Irlande en poésie 1973-2013 (Editions Caractères, Paris). This event will feature several of the Munster poets who are anthologised in this volume.


John BerrymanPhilip ColemanBerryman's Fate: A Centenary Celebration in Verse.
4PM. Venue: Cork City Library

Admission: FREE.


Poetry reading by several contributors from the new anthology commemorating the work of John Berryman.

Born in Oklahoma in 1914, John Berryman was one of the most original American poets of his generation. In a letter to Robert Lowell in 1962, Elizabeth Bishop said of Berryman that “one has the feeling a hundred years from now that he may be all the rage”. In this anthology, edited by Philip Coleman, contemporary poets contribute work responding to or commemorating Berryman's work.

Originally from Cahir, in Tipperary, Philip Coleman graduated from UCC with a First in English and Philosophy in 1995. He is a Lecturer in English in Trinity College Dublin. His reviews on contemporary poetry have appeared in The Edinburgh Review, Poetry Ireland Review, The Irish Left Review, and The Irish Times.


Lidija DimkovskaBarbara PogacnikLidija Dimkovska & Barbara Pogaĉnik
7PM. Venue: Cork Arts Theatre

Admission: €8 full price / €6 concs.



A reading by Macedonian and Slovenian poets.

Lidija Dimkovska was born in 1971 in Skopje, Macedonia. She has published five books of poetry and two novels in her native language. In 2006 Ugly Duckling Presse in New York published her first collection of poetry in English Do Not Awaken Them With Hammers. Copper Canyon published ph Neutral History in 2012 (shortlisted for The Best Translated Book Award 2013). Her books have been translated into many European languages. She has received the Hubert Burda Award for Poetry and European Union Prize for prose. She lives and works in Ljubljana, Slovenia.

Barbara Pogačnik, born in 1973, graduated in Romance linguistics and literature from Université Catholique de Louvain in Belgium and completed her MA at the Sorbonne in Paris. She is a translator, essayist, literary critic and poet and held a post in the Department of Translation Studies at the University of Ljubljana (2002-2004). Her first poetry collection, Poplave (Inundations) was published in 2007 by the Slovenian publisher, Mladinska knjiga. Her second poetry book V množici izgubljeni papir (Sheets of Paper Lost in the Crowd) was published in 2008 – selected poems have been translated into several languages. 


Douglas DunnPeter FallonDouglas Dunn & Peter Fallon
8.30PM. Venue: Cork Arts Theatre

Admission: €8 full price / €6 concs.



A reading by Scottish and Irish poets.

Douglas Dunn is a major Scottish poet, editor and critic, whose Elegies (1985), a moving account of his first wife’s death, became a critical and popular success. Author of over ten collections of poetry, he has also edited several anthologies, including The Faber Book of Twentieth-Century Scottish Poetry (2000). He was Professor in the School of English at the University of St Andrews from 1991, and was awarded an OBE in 2003.

Peter Fallon was born in Germany in 1951 and grew up on his uncle’s farm near Kells in County Meath. At the age of eighteen he founded The Gallery Press which has published more than four hundred books of poems and plays by the country’s finest established and emerging authors and which is recognized as Ireland’s pre-eminent literary publishing house. Fallon received the 1993 O’Shaughnessy Poetry Award from the Irish American Cultural Institute. In 2003 he was elected to Aosdána. He lives with his family in Loughcrew in County Meath.


Liz BerryDon ShareLiz Berry & Don Share
10PM. Venue: Cork Arts Theatre

Admission: €8 full price / €6 concs.



A reading by the editor of Poetry (USA) and Forward Prize winner Liz Berry (UK).

Liz Berry was born in the Black Country and now lives in Birmingham. Her poems have appeared in magazines and anthologies, been broadcast on BBC Radio and recorded for the Poetry Archive.  Her debut pamphlet The Patron Saint of School Girls was published by tall-lighthouse in 2010. She is an assistant poetry editor at Ambit magazine. Her debut collection, Black Country, published by Chatto & Windus in August 2014, was a Poetry Book Society recommendation, an Observer Poetry Book of the Month and won the Forward Prize for Best First Collection.

Don Share is the editor of Poetry magazine. His most recent books are Wishbone(Black Sparrow), Union (Eyewear Publishing), and Bunting’s Persia (Flood Editions); he has also edited a critical edition of Bunting’s poems for Faber and Faber. His work at Poetry has been recognized with three National Magazine Awards in editorial excellence from the American Society of Magazine Editors.



Saturday, 14 February


Valentine's DayLove Poems
1.30PM. Venue: Waterstones

Admission: FREE.


WaterstonesA reading by selected poets from this year's festival, specially themed for Valentine's Day.




Southword JournalSouthword Journal focus
2.30PM. Venue: Cork Arts Theatre

Admission: FREE.


A reading by selected poets published in Southword Journal.

Southword, a literary journal published by the Munster Literature Centre, was founded by Patrick Galvin in 2001. In 2010 Southword moved online, and continues to publish the best in Irish and international poetry and fiction, including the winning poems from the Gregory O'Donoghue Competition, and the winning stories from the Seán Ó Faoláin Competition. This event will include a discussion and readings by recent contributors. http://www.munsterlit.ie/Southword/issues_index.html


WritingGregory O'Donoghue Poetry Prizegiving
& Prebooked 'Introductions' reading
4PM. Venue: Cork Arts Theatre

Admission: €6 full price / €5 concs.

A reading by Breda Wall Ryan along with specially selected emerging poets for our Prebooked Introductions reading.
Breda Wall Ryan is the winning poet in the Gregory O'Donoghue Competition, along with selected emerging poets for our specially selected introductions reading.
The Prebooked Introductions Reading includes five individuals who have yet to publish a full-length collection of poems. They are Jane Clarke, Stephen Connolly, Andrew Eaton, Róisín Kelly and Paul McMahon.


Tom FrenchDavid WheatleyTom French & David Wheatley
7PM. Venue: Cork Arts Theatre

Admission: €8 full price / €6 concs.



Gallery PressThe appearance in this festival by Tom French and David Wheatley are under the auspices of Gallery Goes, a regular Gallery Press initiative funded by the Arts Council Touring Grant.


Tom French was born in Kilkenny in 1966 and raised across the border in Tipperary. He received bursaries in literature from An Chomhairle Ealaíon/The Arts Council, Ireland in 1999 and 2009, and his work was awarded the inaugural Ted McNulty Prize. His first collection Touching the Bones (Gallery Press, 2001) was awarded the Forward Prize for First Collection 2002. His second collection The Fire Step was published in October 2009.

David Wheatley was born in Dublin in 1970. He has published four collections with The Gallery Press: Thirst (1997, Rooney Prize for Irish Literature), Misery Hill (2000), Mocker (2006) and A Nest on the Waves (2010). With Justin Quinn he was a founder-editor of Metre. David Wheatley was awarded the Vincent Buckley Prize in 2008 and features in The Penguin Book of Irish Poetry. He teaches at the University of Aberdeen, having previously taught in Hull University.


Emily BerryMichael CrummeyEmily Berry & Michael Crummey
8.30PM. Venue: Cork Arts Theatre

Admission: €8 full price / €6 concs.


A reading by prizewinning British and Canadian poets.

Emily Berry writes poems and other things. She grew up in London and studied English Literature at Leeds University and Creative Writing at Goldsmiths College. Her debut poetry collection Dear Boy won the Forward Prize for Best First Collection and the Hawthornden Prize. She is a contributor to The Breakfast Bible, a compendium of breakfasts, and is currently working towards a PhD in Creative and Critical Writing at the University of East Anglia.

Michael Crummey is the bestselling author of four books of poetry and a book of short stories, Flesh and Blood. His debut novel, River Thieves, was a finalist for the Scotiabank Giller Prize, and his second, The Wreckage, was a finalist for the Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize. His novel, Galore, won the Commonwealth Book Prize in 2010 and was a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Award. Most recently published is Sweetland (2014, Doubleday Canada).


Lavinia GreenlawJo ShapcottLavinia Greenlaw & Jo Shapcott
10PM. Venue: Cork Arts Theatre

Admission: €10 full price / €8 concs.



A reading by two distinguished British poets.

Lavinia Greenlaw was born in London, where she has lived for most of her life. Her teenage years were spent in a village in Essex. She has published five collections of poetry with Faber & Faber including Minsk (2003), which was shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot, Forward and Whitbread Poetry Prizes, The Casual Perfect (2011) and A Double Sorrow: Troilus and Criseyde  (2014).  

Jo Shapcott was born in London. Poems from her three award-winning collections, Electroplating the Baby (1988), Phrase Book (1992) and My Life Asleep (1998) are gathered in a selected poems, Her Book (2000). She has won a number of literary prizes including the Commonwealth Writers' Prize for Best First Collection, the Forward Prize for Best Collection and the National Poetry Competition (twice). Her most recent collection, Of Mutability, was published in 2010 and won the Costa Book Award.




Cork Spring Poetry Festival