Derek Mahon wins this year’s Irish Times Poetry Now award

Belfast-born poet wins award for third time for his latest work Against the Clock

Derek Mahon’s latest work Against The Clock was described by   the judges as a masterpiece, dwelling with style and wit on “love and loss, transience, age and time”. File photograph: Michael Mac Sweeney/Provision

Derek Mahon’s latest work Against The Clock was described by the judges as a masterpiece, dwelling with style and wit on “love and loss, transience, age and time”. File photograph: Michael Mac Sweeney/Provision

The winner of this year’s Irish Times Poetry Now award is the Belfast-born poet Derek Mahon for Against the Clock (Gallery Press). This is the third time Mahon has won this award, having previously received it for Harbour Lights (2005) and Life on Earth (2008).

Speaking on behalf of the judges, poet and Emeritus Fellow of Wadham College in Oxford, Bernard O’Donoghue said that Against The Clock is simply a masterpiece, dwelling with style and wit on “love and loss, transience, age and time. It is a model too of how to write autobiographically without being self-absorbed”. The book was “driven by an unfailing poetic energy ‘still singing, still going strong’”.

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