I am so at home in Dublin, more than any other city, that I feel it has always been familiar to me. It took me years to see through its soft charm to its bitter prickly kernel - which I quite like too.

Keith Payne

Intimate Oscillations

A poet’s odyssey ‑ from Dublin suburbs out into the world and back

Putting Flesh on the Archive

In a world of interminable newsfeeds and yet also of historical amnesia, there is perhaps no more defiant an act than remembering. Rachael Hegarty’s thirty-three ballads give each of the victims of the Monaghan and Dublin bombings of 1974 a poem where they can live again.

Return and No Shame

Maureen Boyle gives us portraits and poems of our social history, the most democratic of histories, showing us yet again –and yes, it needs to be repeated, especially to the Minister for Education – the importance of history and how it offers among so much else, a perspective, empathy and a future.

Moongaze More Often

Matthew Sweeney’s last collection is bright with painters: Lowry, Van Gogh, Goya, for the most part painters of possibility, or Paula Modersohn-Becker, who moved with Rilke and Rodin and whom Rilke once described as ‘half held in thrall, yet already seizing control’.

Solace and Silliness

As a poet, Iggy McGovern celebrates certainties - the certainty of the slow ticking of a public house clock, ‘a quarter-hour ahead’, the certainty of scientific exploration, of a life clearly recalled, the certainty of the BBC Home Service and of course, the certainty of ageing.

Poetry, Exile, Homecoming

After much wandering, there is a sense of homecoming in Michael O’Loughlin’s later poems, but more the poet coming home to himself than any facile notion of nationhood. This is a collection which places O’Loughlin deservedly within the canon of Irish poetry.

Whiskey In The Jar

Keith Payne was the Ireland Chair of Poetry Bursary Award winner for 2015/2016. His collection Broken Hill (Lapwing Publications) was published in 2015. It was followed in 2016 by Six Galician Poets (Arc Publications) .

Witnessing

The answer then as to why tell these women’s stories, why write this, why read this, are the poems themselves. As with all the important questions, the questions that need to be asked and often can only be formulated by a poet, the poem is the answer.

Signs of the Times

A new Dublin history book is more than just a roll-call of past businesses in the city. It is what much poetry attempts to be, a version of the city that stops you and makes you turn again on your wander through the city centre, tilt your head upwards and take notice.

Joyce’s Comic Strips

A well-drawn portrait of our greatest artist that recounts some of the adventures of his life and work might be just the thing to perk up the days and weeks beyond Bloomsday, when, as like as not, rain could well again be general over Ireland.