Moya Cannon - Poet

Email address: moya_cannon

Moya Cannon was born in Co. Donegal, spent most of her adult life in Galway and now lives in Dublin. She was educated in Co Donegal, at University College Dublin, where she studied History and Politics, and at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, where she was awarded an M. Phil. in International Relations.

Her poems reflect preoccupations with landscape and seascape, with archaeology, with music, with language itself and with our visceral attachment to the beauty of the earth. The work sings of deep connections – the impulse to ritual and pattern that, across centuries, defines us as human, a web of interdependences that sustain the 'gratuitous beauty' of the planet. A number of recent poems focus on the wonders which scientific research have made available to us and about how light can shaft onto the commonplace and jolt us into mystery.

Her latest publiciations are Keats Lives, (Carcanet Press, Manchester, 2015), and Aves de Invierno, bi-lingual selected poems Spanish/English, translations by Jorge Fondebrider, (Editorial Pre-Textos, Valencia, 2016).

She has published four previous collections of poetry, Hands (Carcanet Press, Manchester, 2011), (nominated for the Irish Times/Poetry Now Award, 2011); Carrying the Songs, New and Selected poems, (Carcanet Press 2007); The Parchment Boat (Gallery Press, 1997) and Oar, (Salmon Press, Galway,1990; Poolbeg Press, Dublin, 1994; Gallery Press, Meath, 2000).

A Limited edition art book, Winter Birds was published by Traffic Street Press, 2005, in association with the University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, Minnesota.

A winner of the Brendan Behan award and the O Shaughnessy Award, she has held numerous residencies in Ireland and abroad and was 2011 Heimbold Professor of Irish Studies at Villanova University, P.A.. She frequently represents Ireland at literary festivals abroad – in recent years at the Festival Internacional de Poesía de Medellín, Colombia, at Cosmopoética, Cordoba, Spain and at Sabad, New Delhi, India. Her work has been widely translated and anthologised.

She enjoys working with musicians and has collaborated with The Con Tempo String Quartet as well as with harper Kathleen Loughnane and traditional singers Maighréad and Tríona Ní Dhomhnaill. She has been editor of Poetry Ireland Review and is a member of Aosdána, the affiliation of Irish artists.


Cover of Keats Lives Keats Lives (Carcanet Press, Manchester, 2015)
Hands (Carcanet Press, Manchester, 2011)
Carrying the Songs (Carcanet Press, Manchester, 2007)
cover of Winter Birds Winter Birds (limited edition, Traffic Street Press, in association with the University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, Minnesota, March 2005).
Cover of Parchment Boat The Parchment Boat (Gallery Press, Co Meath, 1997).
Cover of Oar Oar, Salmon Publishing, Galway, 1990.(Second edition, Poolbeg Press, Dublin, 1994; Third Edition, Gallery Press, Co. Meath, 2000).
Cover Oar




Moya Cannon Portrait



Thursday, 31st January
St Bridget’s Day Poetry Reading and Harp Recital with harpist, Kathleen Loughnane.
Irish Embassy, Pałac Tyszkiewiczów, Warsaw

Monday, 11th February, 9pm
Jim Rooney & Friends in the Crane Bar, Galway
with Kathleen Loughnane, Moya Cannon, Arty McGlynn, Nollaig Casey, Mary Staunton and Mary Shannon

Saturday 30th March
Moya Cannon and Bernard O Donoghue in conversation with Niall McMonagle
Mountains to Sea Book Festival, Dun Laoghaire, Co Dublin

Friday-Sunday, 21st-23rd June
Poetry Reading and Workshop
Amergin Poetry Festival
Waterville, Co. Kerry

Thursday, 25th July
Reading at International Association for the Study or Irish Literature (IASIL)
Poetry Ireland, 11, Parnell Sq. East, Dublin 1