Saturday, March 23rd

To book tickets contact The Cork Arts Theatre at 021-4505624
The opening night events and all library events are free
Tickets will be held at the Cork Arts Theatre box office and can be collected during the week of the festival

Gregory O'Donoghue Prize Reading & Southword 36 Launch

3.00pm, Cork Arts Theatre (€5)
Issue 36 of Southword €5 (half price) with ticket purchase

Box Office

At this event the winner of the Gregory O'Donoghue International Poetry Competition, Shangyang Fang, will receive their prize and read from a selection of their poems. Read about all the winning poets, shortlisted poets, and commended poets here. The winning and shortlisted poems will also appear in issue 36 of Southword: New International Writing, which returned as an exclusively print publication with issue 35 in August 2018. Issue 36 features new commissioned work by Kim Addonizio, August Kleinzahler, Thomas Lynch, Thomas McCarthy, Ron Rash and an in-depth interview with Yiyun Li. After the Gregory O’Donoghue Prize reading, there will be readings from contributors to issue 36.


Ailbhe Ní Ghearbhuigh & Leanne O'Sullivan

Change in lineup:
Unfortunately, Marie Howe is unable to attend as previously advertised. However, we are happy to say that Ailbhe Ní Ghearbhuigh and Leanne O'Sullivan will now be reading in her place.

4.00pm, Cork Arts Theatre (€5)

Box Office

Ailbhe Ní Ghearbheagh was born in Kerry. She has read at festivals in New York, Paris, Montréal, Berlin and Ballyferriter. In 2012 her poem ‘Deireadh na Feide’ won the O’Neill Poetry Prize. ‘Filleadh ar an gCathair’ was chosen as Ireland’s EU Presidency poem in 2013 and was shortlisted in 2015 for RTE’s ‘A Poem for Ireland’. Coiscéim published her first book Péacadh (2008) and Tost agus Allagar (2016). A bilingual collection, The Coast Road, was published by Gallery Press, and includes English translations by thirteen poets.

Leanne O'Sullivaneanne O'Sullivan was born in 1983, and comes from the Beara peninsula in West Cork. She received an MA in English in 2006 from University College, Cork, where she now teaches. The winner of several of Ireland's poetry competitions in her early 20s (including the Seacat, Davoren Hanna and RTE Rattlebag Poetry Slam), she has published four collections, all from Bloodaxe, Waiting for My Clothes (2004), Cailleach: The Hag of Beara (2009), winner of the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature in 2010, The Mining Road (2013) and A Quarter of an Hour (2018), shortlisted for the Irish Times Poetry Now Award 2019.




Paul Durcan at 75 (in conversation with Clíona Ní Ríordáin)

7.00pm, Cork Arts Theatre (€10)


Paul Durcan was born in Dublin in 1944. He won the Patrick Kavanagh Award in 1974, was Poet in Residence at the Frost Place, New Hampshire, in 1985, and Writer in Residence at Trinity College, Dublin, in 1990.  His books include Endsville (1967), The Berlin Wall Café (a Poetry Book Society Choice in 1985), Daddy, Daddy (winner of the Whitbread Award for Poetry in 1990), A Snail in My Prime (1993), The Art of Life (2004), The Laughter of Mothers (2007), Life is a Dream (2009), Praise in Which I Live and Move and Have My Being (2012) and The Days of Surprise (2015). In 2001 Paul Durcan received a Cholmondeley Award. He was Ireland Professor of Poetry from 2004 to 2007. He was conferred with a DLitt by Trinity College Dublin in 2009 and by University College Dublin in 2011. He is a member of Aosdána.

Clíona Ní Ríordáin lives in Paris and teaches at the Université de la Sorbonne Nouvelle. She is the editor of Four Irish Poets / Quatre Poetes Irlandais (Dedalus, 2011) and Femmes d'Irlande en poésie 1973-2013 (Editions Caractères, Paris 2013). Jeune Poésie d'Irlande, an anthology of Munster poets in translation co-edited by Clíona Ní Ríordáin and Paul Bensimon was published in 2015 by Editions Illador.


Kim Addonizio & Kathryn Maris

8.30pm, Cork Arts Theatre (€5)


Kim Addonizio is an American writer whose dozen books include Mortal Trash: Poems (W.W. Norton) and Bukowski in a Sundress: Confessions from a Writing Life (Penguin). Her New & Selected, Wild Nights, was published by Bloodaxe. She has received fellowships from the NEA and Guggenheim Foundation, two Pushcart Prizes, and was a National Book Award Finalist for her collection Tell Me.


Kathryn Maris is an American poet based in London. Her work has appeared in Penguin Modern Poets 5, The Pushcart Prize Anthology, The Best British Poetry, The Forward Book of Poetry, Granta and Poetry. Her full-length collections include The Book of Jobs (Four Way Books, 2006), God Loves You (Seren, 2013) and The House with Only an Attic and a Basement (Penguin, 2018).
(Photograph © Marcos Avlonitis)




Billy Collins (in conversation with Leanne O'Sullivan)

10.00pm, Cork Arts Theatre (€10)

Box Office

Billy Collins is the author of twelve collections of poetry, including The Rain in Portugal, Aimless Love, Horoscopes for the Dead, Ballistics, The Trouble with Poetry, Nine Horses, Sailing Alone Around the Room, Questions About Angels, The Art of Drowning, and Picnic, Lightning. He is also the editor of Poetry 180: A Turning Back to Poetry, 180 More: Extraordinary Poems for Every Day, and Bright Wings: An Illustrated Anthology of Poems About Birds. A Distinguished Professor of English at Lehman College of the City University of New York and Senior Distinguished Fellow at the Winter Park Institute of Rollins College, he was Poet Laureate of the United States from 2001 to 2003 and New York State Poet from 2004 to 2006. In 2016 he was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

Leanne O'Sullivan has published four poetry collections, all from Bloodaxe: Waiting for My Clothes (2004), Cailleach: The Hag of Beara (2009), winner of the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature in 2010, The Mining Road (2013) and A Quarter of an Hour (2018). She received the Ireland Chair of Poetry Bursary Award in 2009 and the Lawrence O’Shaughnessy Award for Irish Poetry in 2011.