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Welcome to the Munster
Literature Centre

Founded in 1993, the Munster Literature Centre (Ionad Litríochta an Deiscirt) is a non-profit arts organisation dedicated to the promotion and celebration of literature, especially that of Munster. To this end, we organise festivals, workshops, readings and competitions. Our publishing section, Southword Editions, publishes a biannual journal, poetry collections and short stories. We actively seek to support new and emerging writers and are assisted in our efforts through funding from Cork City Council, Cork County Council and the Arts Council of Ireland.Originally located in Sullivan's Quay, the centre moved to its current premises in the Frank O'Connor House (the author's birthplace) at 84 Douglas Street, in 2003.

In 2000, the Munster Literature Centre organised the first Frank O'Connor International Short Story Festival, an event dedicated to the celebration of the short story and named for one of Cork's most beloved authors. The festival showcases readings, literary forums and workshops. Following continued growth and additional funding, the Cork City - Frank O'Connor International Short Story Award was introduced in 2005, coinciding with Cork's designation as that year's European Capital of Culture. The award is now recognised as the single biggest prize for a short story collection in the world and is presented at the end of the festival.In 2002, the Munster Literature Centre introduced the Seán Ó Faoláin Short Story Prize, an annual short story competition dedicated to one of Ireland's most accomplished story writers and theorists. This too is presented during the FOC festival. The centre also hosts the Cork Spring Literary Festival each year, at which the Gregory O'Donoghue International Poetry Prize is awarded (established 2010).

Workshops are held by featured authors in both autumn and spring, allowing the general public to receive creative guidance in an intimate setting for a minimal fee. In addition, the centre sponsors a Writer in Residence each year. We invite you to browse our website for further information regarding our events, Munster literature, and other literary information. Should you have any queries, we would be happy to hear from you.




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Munster Literature Centre









Liberty Walks Naked by Maram al-Masri
translated by Theo Dorgan


Southword Editions, 60 pages
ISBN: 978-1-905002-49-8
Price: 12 (within Republic of Ireland)
14 (shipped internationally)

Maram al-Masri is from Lattakia in Syria, now settled in Paris. She studied English Literature at Damscus University before starting publishing her poetry in Arab magazines in the 1970s. Thus far her work has been translated into eight languages. Her poetry collections include Red Cherry on the White Floor and I look at you. Most recently, in English, she has published Barefoot Souls (Arc 2015) also translated by Theo Dorgan.

Theo Dorgan was born in Cork and has published five books of poetry. His most recent collections are Greek (Dedalus 2012) and Nine Bright Shiners (Dedalus 2014). He has published two prose accounts of sailing journeys, Sailing for Home (Penguin) and Time on the Ocean (New Island 2013). He published Making Way, a novel, in 2013. He has translated a previous collection of Maram al-Masri's, Barefoot Souls (Arc 2015).

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Click on each cover for a blurb, reviews, author biographies and sample poems. Paypal links on individual pages.

A Boat to Heaven by Zhao Lihong

A Boat to Heaven

Southword Editions, 2010.
Poems by Zhao Lihong. Translated from Chinese by Xu Qin.





Pocket Apocalypse

Pocket Apocalypse

Southword Editions, 2005.
Poems by Katarzyna Borun-Jagodzinska. Translated from Polish by Gerry Murphy.






Selected Poems


Selected Poems
Southword Editions, 2005.
Poems by Kyriakos Charalambides. Translated from Greek by Greg Delanty.







A Visit to the Clockmaker


A Visit to the Clockmaker
Southword Editions, 2005.
Poems by Kristin Dimitrova. Translated from Bulgarian by Gregory O'Donoghue.








Moose Beetle Swallow

Moose Beetle Swallow

Southword Editions, 2005.
Poems by Andres Ehin. Translated from Estonian by Patrick Cotter.








Flying Blind

Flying Blind

Southword Editions, 2005.
Poems by Guntars Godiņš. Translated from Latvian by Eugene O'Connell.











Richesses: Francophone Songwriter Poets
Southword Editions, 2008. Hardback.
Edited and translated by Aidan Hayes.











Stay in a Sanitorium

A Stay in a Sanatorium
Southword Editions, 2005.
Poems by Zbyněk Hejda. Translated from Czech by Bernard O'Donoghue.








Songs of Earth and Light


Songs of Earth and Light
Southword Editions, 2005.
Poems by Barbara Korun. Translated from Slovene by Theo Dorgan.









The Belling


The Belling
Southword Editions, 2005.
Poems by László Lator. Translated from Hungarian by Divers Hands.









After the Raising of Lazarus


After the Raising of Lazarus
Southword Editions, 2005.
Poems by Ileana Mălăncioiu. Translated from Romanian by Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin.







Confidential Reports


Confidential Reports
Southword Editions, 2005.
Poems by Immanuel Mifsud. Translated from Maltese by Maurice Riordan.







The Towers Turn Red


The Towers Turn Red
Southword Editions, 2005.
Poems by Sigitas Parulskis. Translated from Lithuanian by Liz O'Donoghue.








Forty Four


Fourty Four
Southword Editions, 2005.
Poems by Dana Podracká. Translated from Slovak by Robert Welch.














Subscribe to Southword



Southword Editions




2019 John Montague Fellow
Sandra Beasley


2018 Fellow Carys Davies

2019 Frank O'Connor
Short Story Fellowship
applications now open

Deadline: 31st Jan 2019




The Cork International
Poetry Festival

March 19 - 23, 2019



The Cork International
Short Story Festival




The Gregory O'Donoghue
Poetry Competition

Results February 2019



The Southword Fiction
Chapbook Competition

Results January 2019


how to pass

The Seán Ó Faoláin
Short Story Competition

2018 winner How to Pass
by Louise Crimmins
will be in Southword 36



The Fool for Poetry
Chapbook Competition

2018 winners
1st: Katie Hale
2nd: Regina Melveny




Youtube channel



Words Ireland

The Munster Literature Centre
is a constituent member
of Words Ireland


Poetry International

Recent additions:

Michelle O'Sullivan
Paddy Bushe
Doireann Ní Gríofa
Paul Casey


The Munster Literature Centre

Frank O'Connor House, 84 Douglas Street, Cork, Ireland.

Tel. (353) 021 4312955, Email: munsterlit(AT)eircom(DOT)net

Irish Registered Charity No.12374