• David J Costello

Poetry from the Small Presses - Michael Farry

It is a real privilege to have been invited to curate the first ever Poetry from the Small Presses event for the Wirral Poetry Festival 2019. To be honest I've enjoyed indulging myself in my personal choice of six poets representing various publoishers of poetry from the small presses.

Over the next few weeks leading up to the event itself I'll be blogging about each of the participants continuing with Ric Hool, the fourth of the six.

I hope it will whet the appetite and encourage you to come along! Tickets can be booked on-line using the following link:

I hope to see you there!

Poetry from the Small Presses

Birkenhead Town Hall Hamilton Square Birkenhead, CH41 5BR

Saturday 11 May 2019, 2pm

Tickets: £5 (under 18 years free)

Michael, the fifth of the six poets representing small press poets at this years Wirral Festival completes a pleasing geographical set. We have poets performing from England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales.

Michael is from the Republic of Ireland and, over the last few years, I've bumped into him all over the place - from Hoylake to Ilkley, now I'm looking forward to his reading in sunny Birkenhead!

This is Michael's biography:

Michael Farry, a native of County Sligo, Ireland, a retired primary teacher, is a poet and historian. He is married to Winifred, and they have four children and seven grandchildren.

He is a founder member of Boyne Writers Group, Trim, 2006, and was the group secretary and editor of the group’s magazine, Boyne Berries, from its beginning in 2007 until summer 2014. He has also been a member of the LitLab Writers Group initiative of Meath and Cavan Arts Offices since its inception in 2007. As a member of the latter is involved in organising the annual Bailieborough Poetry Festival which takes place at the beginning of October.

He has attended workshops and courses with various poets in Ireland, including Nessa O’Mahony, Iggy McGovern, Don Paterson, Vona Groarke, Carolyne Forche and Paul Muldoon. He attended an Arvon poetry course in The Ted Hughes Arvon Centre, Lumb Bank in West Yorkshire, in 2007, with tutor-poets Colette Bryce and Matthew Hollis. He has attended poetry workshops in the UK with Daljit Nagra, Kathryn Maris and Andrew McMillan.

He was selected for Poetry Ireland Introductions in 2011.

His poetry has been published in Ireland, in journals such as The Stony Thursday Book, Cyphers, The SHOp, Crannóg, Revival, Skylight 47, and in UK journals including Acumen, Antiphon, Brittle Star, The North, erbacce, Orbis, The Frogmore Papers, Coast to Coast to Coast, and Aesthetica. Poems of his have also been published in Australia, USA, Canada, Israel and India. in Regime in Australia; in the Soliloquies Anthology in Canada and in the Imagination and Place Anthology, USA.

His chapbook The Hawk’s Rock – A Poetry Sequence was published as part of a collaboration with Sligo artist Conor Gallagher in September 2010.

His first poetry collection, Asking for Directions, was published by Doghouse Books, Tralee, in 2012 and his second, The Age of Glass, by Revival Press, Limerick, in 2017.

Poems of his have won the Síarscéal Poetry Competition (Roscommon) and the Fermoy Poetry Competition in 2013, the Dromineer Poetry Competition in 2014, the Robert Monteith Poetry Competition, Wicklow, the Goldsmith Poetry Competition, Longford, and the WOW Poetry Award, Galway in 2016, and the North West Words competition, Donegal, in 2017.

His poems have also been shortlisted or commended in other competitions including, in Ireland, Gregory O’Donoghue poetry competition, the Patrick Kavanagh competition, the Allingham competition, the Listowel Single Poem competition, and in the UK, the Ilkley Poetry Competition, the Plough Prize and the Bridport Prize.

He has read at poetry events all over Ireland and in the UK and in Australia. He has been a featured reader at Over the Edge, Galway, At the Edge, Cavan, North West Words Letterkenny, Sunflower Sessions Dublin, Listeners Readings Dublin, Ó Bhéal Cork, Poets’ Parlour Sligo, On The Nail Limerick, Dundalk Book Festival, Staccato, Dublin, 1000 Monkeys Guildford UK and Perth Poetry Club Western Australia.

He is now working towards a third poetry collection.

He obtained a PhD in Trinity College, Dublin in 1999 for his thesis, Sligo 1921-23 – The Aftermath of Revolution which was published by UCD Press, Dublin under the same title in 2000. His history book, Sligo, The Irish Revolution 1912-1923, was published in 2012 by Four Courts Press, Dublin.

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