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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Mary O'DonnellMary ODonnell is a poet, novelist and short-story writer. Her poetry titles include such as The Place of Miracles, Unlegendary Heroes, The Ark Builders, and in 2015 Those April Fevers. She also wrote the best-selling literary novel The Light-Makers, Virgin and the Boy, The Elysium Testament, Storm over Belfast and Where They Lie. She has has worked in journalism, especially theatre criticism. In 2010 she has co-edited a book of translations from the Galician (To the Winds Our Sails, Salmon Poetry). She presented and scripted three series of poetry programmes for RTÉ Radio, including a series on poetry in translation during 2005 and 2006 called Crossing the Lines and taught creative writing at Maynooth University, and worked on the faculty of Carlow University Pittsburghs MFA programme in creative writing for eleven years.

A response from Inpress Books UK to her recent collection Those April Fevers: "This sharp, distinctive collection soars like verse and sings with a unique emotional intensity. Decisive. Ruthless. Brilliant."





The pulp of almonds



By day, tourists shuffle the narrow thread

of Nassau Street, or photograph the Campanile,

with selfies for friends in Japan, China & Ohio.


I nudge along, inhale a scent of marzipan and cinnamon,

air-welters of coffee, licks of warm chocolate,

my papers and poems ordered for these students


who await a daily bread that fills in ways their parents

long ago discarded, shedding patterns from their own

unpoetried hours. So writer


your words are ground to pulp,

the easier for them to digest the scent and spice

of literature, the easier for them to harness some neglect,


a father-rape, mother-beating,

whatever eclipsed a light half glimpsed.

Now this earnest appraisal of themselves,


for themselves. I think of almonds, boiled and skinned,

unsugared, ground to compliance,

chaste emotions, that holding in of the gut.




©2016 Mary O'Donnell



Author Links


Mary O'Donnell homepage

Mary O'Donnell at Arc Publications

'Those April Fevers': poem by Mary O'Donnell in the Irish Times






©2009 Southword Editions
Munster Literature Centre

Southword 6 Southword No 7 Southword No 8 Southword No 9 Southword No 10 Southword 11 southword 12 Southword No 14 Southword No 15