Eleven poets from across Ireland are featured in The Best New British and Irish Poets 2017 anthology from Eyewear Publishing, out in March.
Niall Bourke, Jo Burns, Elaine Cosgrove, Anne Cousins, Susannah Dickey, Maeve Henry, Majella Kelly, Emma Must, Paul Nash, Geraldine O’Kane and Matthew Rice have all been selected by guest judge Luke Kennard to appear in the second annual anthology from Eyewear. The poets were selected from a competition open to submissions from any poet of British or Irish citizenship and/or UK or Irish residency who has not yet published (and is not under contract to publish) a full-length collection of poetry.
Described as a “diverse and lively group of writers from across these isles represents the most interesting new voices writing in the English language today”, the anthology is a who’s who of names to watch out for in the years ahead.
Of the collection, Luke Kennard said he was “delighted to see such an exceptionally strong showing from Irish/Northern Irish poets – it was a privilege to read the work.”
We spoke with some of the poets featured:
Matthew Rice: “It was an honour to be selected for the ‘Best New British and Irish Poets 2017’; the sense of vindication regarding one’s work that results in any publication was, in this case, particularly underlined by the fact that Luke Kennard was this year’s editor – a poet I very much admire. I’m grateful also to Todd Swift, Kelly Davio and all at Eyewear Publishing.”
Jo Burns: “Recognition isn’t necessarily the driving force when putting pen to paper. However, there is a sense of relief for me when I feel that a poem I have written has touched someone in some small way. To have been picked out by Luke Kennard (whose work I greatly admire) and nestled between so many fabulous poets in this anthology, is an absolute honour. Thank you to Eyewear Publishing, Todd Swift and Kelly Davio for creating this fabulous platform for emerging poets.”
Geraldine O’Kane: “I am delighted and thrilled to not only have been chosen for this wonderful anthology (thank you Luke Kennard) but to share pages with so many Irish, Northern Irish poets. Thank you to Todd Swift, Kelly Davio and all the Eyewear Team for this amazing opportunity and all the hard work they do for poetry. Looking forward to the launching of this beautiful anthology! Watch this space for details of a reading near you.”
Elaine Cosgrove: “I am thrilled to be one of a number of Northern Irish and Irish poets in this innovative anthology that celebrates a cross-section of emerging voices. There’s a delightful togetherness of work to it all, and I am honoured to be in such good company. Can’t wait to read the anthology!”
The anthology is available to pre-order now.