Best of Irish Poetry 2009
Best of Irish Poetry 2010

Editor: Matthew Sweeney



Songs of Earth and Light

Songs of Earth and Light
Barbara Korun poems translated by Theo Dorgan



Done Dating DJs
Done Dating DJs
by Jennifer Minniti-Shippey
Winner, 2008 Fool for Poetry Competition




Richesses: Francophone Songwriter Poets
Edited and translated by Aidan Hayes





Munster Literature Centre

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Cork City Council



Foras na Gaeilge



Cork County Council







Catherine Phil McCarthy

Catherine Phil MacCarthy’s collections include How High the Moon (Poetry Ireland, 1991, a joint book), This Hour of the Tide (1994), the blue globe (1998), Suntrap (2007), and a first novel, One Room an Everywhere (2003). She was awarded a bursary in poetry from the Arts Council in 1994, 1999 and 2007/8. Anthology publication includes Jumping Off Shadows (Cork U.P., 1996); The White Page (Salmon, 1999); The Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing V (Cork U.P. 2002); Women Poets Writing in English (Seren, 2008); TEXT (Celtic Press, 2008); Opening Eyes (Cambridge U.P., 2010). She is a former editor of Poetry Ireland Review. Her fifth collection of poems, Daughters of the House is due for submission to Blackstaff Press.




Turning Right


The road swerves and dips, slants south-east,

straight as a compass for miles between two ditches

alive with finches, fields on both sides of lambs and flowering gorse,

(now sweet musk, pollen-breath of summer)


and straddling the end of that line on the horizon

as if it were designed, the Blackstairs,

a pyramid, only green, edging off the windscreen

as the road wound a slow descent


towards the river. That afternoon

as we strolled along, it was all sheer sunlit glitter

and fish jumping where we came to the din of a weir,

that lone heron stalked,  keeled neck fully outstretched,


mimed such a motionless procession

that we stood there, listening to the rush of streams,

happy water weaving over stones, the ascending

chorus of plain chant, a wordless uplift,


as if time stopped and we were open to pure being,

indivisible from loved ones’ gone,

in the same place maybe as the gates

of heaven, so when the breeze


lifted sally leaves in small bursts

in the ancient woods behind us

and let them drop, we fancied

we might hear the voice of God.



©2010 Catherine Phil MacCarthy



Author Links


MacCarthy's Home Page

MacCarthy in the MLC Writers' Index






©2009 Southword Editions
Munster Literature Centre

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