Thomas McCarthy

Thomas McCarthy at the Louis MacNeice Centenary Conference & Celebration
Thomas McCarthy © Paul Maddern

Thomas McCarthy was born in Waterford in 1954. A poet, novelist and librarian, he lives and works in Cork. He made a major contribution to the city’s year as European Capital of Culture. He has published seven collections of poems with Anvil, most recently Merchant Prince (2005). He has received the Literary Award of the Irish American Foundation.

August Kleinzahler writes: ‘No other poet comes to mind, living or dead, who has succeeded in engaging the political as poetic subject matter as McCarthy manages in his poems about the Fianna Fail Party. There is a larger quality, or group of qualities, behind McCarthy’s success in the realm of political poetry that extends to his other poetry. It has something to do with the restraint in voice and tone.. an unusual degree of compositional balance.’

The following recordings were made at the Louis MacNeice Centenary Celebration and Conference at Queen's University, Belfast in September 2007.


Broken Promises

A Fianna Fail Adoption

Thinking of my Father in the Musee Picasso

The Waiting Deputies

At the Grave of Amadei Dale Wallace

Nathaniel Murphy in his Sister's Bedroom, 1798

He witnesses Another Hanging, 1813

A Fiction - The Sea

© All recordings copyright Thomas McCarthy and the Seamus Heaney Centre for Poetry.

Thomas was reading with Medbh McGuckian, Michael Longley and Derek Mahon.