Born in 1939, Michael Longley is an Irish poet of English parentage who has spent most of his life in Belfast and at his second home at Carrigskeewan on the coast of Co. Mayo. A dedicated naturalist, he studied Classics at Trinity College Dublin, and worked for the Arts Council of Northern Ireland from 1970 to 1991. He published his first full-length collection, No Continuing City, in 1969, which was followed by An Exploded View, Man Lying on a Wall and The Echo Gate (1979), part one of his output. Part two began over a decade later with Gorse Fires in 1991 and continued to Snow Water in 2004. His Collected Poems (Jonathan Cape, 2006) was followed by A Hundred Doors (2011) and The Stairwell (2014), both from Cape. He has won most of the prizes awardable to poetry, including the the Griffin Poetry Prize, T.S. Eliot Prize, the Whitbread Prize, the Hawthornden Prize, the Irish Times Poetry Now Award, the Wilfred Owen Award and the Librex Montale Prize. He received the Queen’s Gold Medal for Poetry for 2001, and was made a CBE in the Queen’s Birthday honours in 2010.
He co-edited The Essential Brendan Kennelly (Bloodaxe Books, 2011) with Terence Brown, and wrote the introduction to Frank Ormsby's Goat's Milk: New & Selected Poems (Bloodaxe Books, 2015). Bloodaxe published Fran Brearton's critical guide, Reading Michael Longley, in 2006.
Books by Michael Longley