Ciaran O’Driscoll

Ciaran O’Driscoll (b. 1943) is an Irish poet whose work blends dark humour and lyrical craft. He has published eight books of poetry including Gog and Magog (Salmon, 1987), Moving On, Still There: New and Selected Poems (Dedalus Press, 2001) and more recently Surreal Man, a chapbook of 21 poems (Pighog, 2006), and Vecchie Donne di Magione, a dual-language edition of poems in an Italian setting (Volumnia Editrice, 2006). In 2001, Liverpool University Press published his childhood memoir, A Runner Among Falling Leaves. His most recent collection was Life Monitor, published in 2009 by Three Spires Press. He has won a number of awards for his work, among them the Patrick and Katherine Kavanagh Fellowship in Poetry. In 2007 he was elected to Aosdána, an institution established by the Irish Arts Council to honour artists and writers who have made an outstanding contribution to art and literature.

O’Driscoll’s early influences were the classical Modernists of the 20th century including T S Eliot and Saint-John Perse. However, over time O’Driscoll found their purity of style and oblique manner increasingly at odds with what he wanted to express, particularly his anger at political folly and social injustice. He turned to satire as an alternative and this enabled him to create the new poetic voice for which he is now best known. He now lives in Limerick, Republic of Ireland.