Many of Ciaran Carson’s poems captured the local lived experience of the Troubles with a sharp caustic lyrical force. Photograph:  Cyril Byrne

Born: October 9th, 1948   Died: October 6th, 2019 Ciaran Carson, one of the most talented Northern Irish poets of his generation and a gifted tr(...)

‘When the Good Friday Agreement was painstakingly achieved I felt it had an almost poetic complexity,’ writes Michael Longley. ’You might say that today Northern Irish politics more often resemble bad prose.’ Photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

Two quotations – possibly (maybe even probably) the two best-known poetic references to the Troubles and peace process – are cited a number of times i(...)

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 t(...)

Dubliner Fergus Linehan, director of the Edinburgh International Festival. Photograph: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

Rachel O’Riordan from Cork is just about to take up the job of artistic director of one of London’s major theatres, the Lyric Hammersmith, having prev(...)

Eileen Battersby with her horse Sophie in 2010. Photograph: Alan Betson

Eileen Battersby, the late Irish Times literary correspondent, who died on Sunday, December 23rd, after a car crash in Co Meath, was renowned for both(...)

Eileen Battersby near her home, in Co Meath, in 2010. Photograph: Alan Betson

Former Irish Times Literary Correspondent Eileen Battersby died on December 23rd, following a car crash in Co Meath the previous day. Her daughter Nad(...)

The Lyric Theatre in Belfast: ‘We were keen to imbue the new building with the spirit of the old,’ says Mark Carruthers

Belfast’s Lyric Theatre is 50 years old. What began as a personal crusade and grew into an important cultural movement is now one of Ireland’s leading(...)

Jimmy Hasty receiving  Dundalk FC’s footballer of the year award for 1965

Dock Street, Belfast: a grey, midweek October lunchtime. As the American Bar opens its doors optimistically, a juggernaut zooms by bound for one of th(...)

The lark ascending: the skylark has hoisted countless poets into verse. Illustration: Michael Viney

My first encounter with a singing skylark, a few decades ago, put me flat on my back on the moss of the dunes – a proper posture for awe. The bird ha(...)

Poet Leontia Flynn,  winner of this year’s Irish Times Poetry Now award  for her collection ‘The Radio’.

The winner of this year’s Irish Times Poetry Now award is Leontia Flynn for her collection The Radio. The €2,000 award will be presented on Saturday(...)

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