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Fool For Poetry Chapbook Competition

Gregory O'Donoghue International Poetry Competition


The Gregory O'Donoghue Poetry Prize

Announcing the 2017 Winners!


First Prize
'Official Story' by Robert Lipton (Richmond, California)

Second Prize
'Portrait of the City with Mastecetomy' by Majella Kelly (Tuam, Galway)

Third Prize
'Black Hour Blues' by Kim Addonizio (Oakland, California)


'Anatomy of a Rape Joke' by Emily Rose Cole (Cincinnati, Ohio)
'Glossolalist' by Annelyse Gelman (Austin, Texas)
'Abecedarian for the Pimp I Almost Took a Bullet For'
by Carlos Andrez Gomez (U.S.)
'Scraps' by Eoin Hagerty (Dublin)
'In the Beauty Parlour of Saint Agnes 'by Cynthia Hughes (Putney, Vermont)
'Goethe in Rome' by James Leader (Luxembourg)
'Meetings with Enclosed Nuns' by Sue Norton (York, England)
'L'innconnue de la Seine' by Cheryl Pearson (Manchester)
'The Girls from Lal Bazaar' by Rochelle Potkar (Mumbai)
'Reverse Astrology' by Jona Ray (India)
Klimt's First Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer by Ellen Sazzman (Maryland, U.S.)



Open for submissions September to November annually


Gregory O'Donoghue Poetry Prize

painting © R. Noonan


The Munster Literature Centre holds an annual competition for an international poetry prize for a single poem, named in honour of a late Irish poet long associated with the Centre.

The Gregory O’Donoghue International Poetry Prize will have a first prize of €1,000 (approx $1326.70 USD/ £799.94 GBP @ xe.com on 21st August 2014), a week's residency at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre and publication in Southword Literary Journal. The MLC will subvent travel costs for the winner up to €600 and provide hotel accommodation and meals for three days during the Cork Spring Poetry Festival.

There will be a second prize of €500, third prize of €250, and ten runners-up will each have their poems published in Southword and receive Southword’s standard fee of €30.

The winners were notified in late January 2017. Due to the large volume of entries, the judge will not be able to notify the authors of non-winning poems or give individual feedback. A shortlist was posted on our website and on social media in late January and the winners were announced during the Cork Spring Poetry Festival.
If you would like to receive the shortlist by email, please sign up for our email newsletter by visiting http://www.munsterlit.ie . Simply enter your email address into the 'Email Newsletter' form.


How to enter the Gregory O'Donoghue International Poetry Competition

Winning Poets from previous years


Breda Wall Ryan

2015 Winner Breda Wall Ryan



Fool For Poetry International Chapbook Competition
(Annually from mid-January to end of May)


Announcing the 2017 Winners!

Molly MinturnBernadette McCarthy


Molly Minturn of Charlottesville, USA has taken first place for her manuscript Not in Heaven, and Bernadette McCarthy of Cork, Ireland was awarded second place for Bog Arabic. VIEW FINALISTS, LONGLIST & MORE ABOUT THE COMPETITION HERE.

Molly Minturn lives in Charlottesville, Virginia. Her poems and essays have appeared or are forthcoming in Boston Review, the Iowa Review, Sycamore Review, Bennington Review, the Toast, Indiana Review, Longreads, and elsewhere. She is a graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop and the University of Virginia. This is her first book.

Bernadette McCarthy lives in Kilmichael near Macroom and has a PhD in early medieval archaeology from UCC.  Her poems have been published in journals including The Penny Dreadful, Agenda, Causeway, Crannóg, The Lake, and The Linnet’s Wings, and also in The Irish Examiner and the anthology ‘On the Banks’ (ed. A. Hopkins, Collins Press 2016). She was highly commended in the 2015 Ó Bhéal Five Words Competition.




Two winners will each have their manuscript published, receive €500 in cash and fifty complimentary copies of their chapbook.

The Fool For Poetry Competition is open to new, emerging and established poets from any country BUT at least one of the winners will be a debutante (with no chapbook or book published previously). 25 - 50 other entrants will be publicly listed as highly commended.

Manuscripts must be sixteen to twenty pages in length, in the English language and the sole work of the entrant with no pastiches, translations or 'versions'. The poems can be in verse or prose. Each chapbook is guaranteed a review in Southword Journal.

The winning chapbooks will be published in February 2018 with striking cover designs, ISBNs, barcodes and will be offered for sale internationally through our own website, Amazon, and selected independent book sellers. The winning poets will be considered for the 2018 Cork International Poetry Festival programme and have their chapbooks entered for the UK Forward Prize for best poem and anthology. An entrance fee of €25 will be charged for each manuscript. Entrants may enter more than one manuscript. For full details consult www.munsterlit.ie in December. The winners will be selected by a panel chosen by the management board of Southword Editions.


Winning Poets from previous years

Buy winning chapbooks from previous years


Catherine Maya PopaJohn MeeVictor TapnerTania Hershman






Cork International Poetry Festival

14 - 17 February 2018

Cork International Poetry Festival