Friday, February 5, 2010

Irish Times Poetry Now Award

The shortlist for this year’s Irish Times Poetry Now Award for the best single volume of poems published by an Irish poet in 2009 were announced on Saturday. Report here.

The shortlisted volumes are Ciaran Carson for On The Night Watch ; Vona Groarke for Spindrift; Sinéad Morrissey for Through the Square Window; Eileán Ní Chuilleanáin for The Sun-fish, and Peter Sirr for The Thing Is. The only one I've read is The Sun-fish which was also short listed for the 2009 T S Eliot Prize for Poetry.

Thoughts on the list include wonder at how prolific poet and novelist Ciaran Carson (right) is - he had a collection on last year's shortlist as well - and the fact that all but one on the list are published by Peter Fallon's Gallery Press in Loughcrew in Co Meath - three out of last year's five shortlisted titles were published by the same press.

The winner will be presented with €5,000 during the DLR International Poetry Now Festival, which will take place in Dún Laoghaire from March 25th-28th. The website doesn't have this year's programme yet but it's due to be announced any time now.

Last year's winner was Derek Mahon for his collection Life on Earth. This year's judges are poet and translator, John F Deane; poet Alan Gillis, and academic and literary critic Maria Johnston.

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