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Welcome to the Munster

Literature Centre

Founded in 1993, the Munster Literature Centre (Tigh Litriochta) is a non-profit arts organisation dedicated to the promotion and celebration of literature, especially that of Munster. To this end, we organise festivals, workshops, readings and competitions. Our publishing section, Southword Editions, publishes a biannual journal, poetry collections and short stories. We actively seek to support new and emerging writers and are assisted in our efforts through funding from Cork City Council, Cork County Council and the Arts Council of Ireland.

Originally located in Sullivan's Quay, the centre moved to its current premises in the Frank O'Connor House (the author's birthplace) at 84 Douglas Street, in 2006.

In 2000, the Munster Literature Centre organised the first Frank O'Connor International Short Story Festival, an event dedicated to the celebration of the short story and named for one of Cork's most beloved authors. The festival showcases readings, literary forums and workshops. Following continued growth and additional funding, the Frank O'Connor International Short Story Award was introduced in 2005, coinciding with Cork's designation as that year's European Capital of Culture. The award is now recognised as the single biggest prize for a short story collection in the world and is presented at the end of the festival.

In 2002, the Munster Literature Centre introduced the Seán Ó Faoláin Short Story Prize, an annual short story competition dedicated to one of Ireland's most accomplished story writers and theorists. This too is presented during the FOC festival. The centre also hosts the Éigse festival in the spring of each year.

Workshops are held by featured authors in both autumn and spring, allowing the general public to receive creative guidance in an intimate setting for a minimal fee. In addition, the centre sponsors a Writer in Residence each year.

We invite you to browse our website for further information regarding our events, Munster literature, and other literary information. Should you have any queries, we would be happy to hear from you.





Selected Poems

Selected Poems
Southword Editions, 2005.
Poems by Kyriakos Charalambides. Translated from Greek by Greg Delanty.

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Kyriakos Charalambides is a Greek Cypriot whose work sings in the odes of western culture, yet is most at home upon the stage of Greek civilisation. He specifically speaks in the tradition of the Modern Greek poets Cavafy, Seferis and Elytis, but in his own Cypriot register. Kyriakos Charalambides is the recognised voice of Cyprus since the 1974 Turkish invasion.

What the critics have said:

"One of those rare poets whose works will endure for centuries." -The Penniless Press

"He writes in the tradition of modern Greek poets like Cavafy, George Seferis and Odysseus Elytis, but finds his own voice and style. Delanty presents these short to medium-length poems in clear, vivid English." - The Bloomsbury Review

"The poems here are wonderfully lyrical and imaginative, the language working in a way undreamt of in current Irish poetry- one reason we need to read more translations." -Books Ireland


Work from Charalambides' Selected Poems



Turtle Hunt


You don’t catch turtles with a fly rod.

They appear around 9 p.m. on the sand

dragging trawl nets, drawn by their own course.

Puffing, they slice the beach in two

and dig to a depth of about a foot;

they lay their eggs inside.


Quite a crowd turn each turtle shell

upside down with long sticks.

When they chop off a head, they’re surprised

that the heart of the turtle throbs on

for such a long time.





The Dove After The Flood


The dove unfolded its wings, set off without shillyshally

to wherever the joyful sob

of its cooing led it.

Embarking, he saw the silent lake.

Nothing was familiar.

He traveled in the morning, wings spread

until he spotted masts; spars of wrecked trees.


In an age where there are fewer angels

than today angels flocked around

this messenger.

They were jealous that this dove

could manage the flight paths of the earth

with his little eyes and could dawdle

or return according to his mood.


But he

welcome the wind since he couldn’t see

the silver underside of the olive leaves

unless the wind blew. That was his job: ah

cut a twig and wing it home to that great

floating house of Noah.







The sun

followed the contest of Icarus

high diving

into his grave,

losing the radiant glow.


The sun turned pale,

the sea made a pact with the sun

and she kept the pact,

neither of them in a panic.


The sum plunged beneath the sea

where Icarus fell, but couldn’t come up with the lad.

The sun emerged again at dawn

hoping to retrieve him some day.


Copyright ©2005 Kyriakos Charalambides

English translation Copyright ©2005 Greg Delanty



Kyriakos Charalambides



Kyriakos Charalambides was born in Akhna, in the Famagusta District of Cyprus. He studied history and archeology at the University of Athens. He is the author of nine books of poetry. Three of them were awarded the First State Prize for Poetry (Cyprus). His book Tholos (Dome) was awarded the Athens Academy Prize (1989) and his collection Metahistory was awarded the Greek National Prize for Poetry (1996). In 1997 he published his own translation and introduction to Romanos the Melodist’s Three Hymns which was awarded the Hellenic Society Literary Translator’s Prize. He is also the recipient of the 1998 Cavafy Prize (Egypt).



Greg Delanty



Greg Delanty was born in Cork, Ireland in 1958 and lives in Burlington, Vermont where he teaches at St. Michael’s College. His Collected Poems: 1986-2006 was published in 2006. Delanty’s other poetry collections are The Ship of Birth, The Blind Stitch, The Hellbox, American Wake, Southward, and Cast in the Fire; special editions include Striped Ink and The Fifth Province. He has also translated Aristophanes and Eiripides.

Delanty edited, with Nuala Ní Dhomhnaill, Jumping Off Shadows: Selected Contemporary Irish Poetry (1995) and, with Robert Welsh, The Selected Poems of Patrick Galvin (1995).
































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Southword Editions




2019 John Montague Fellow
Sandra Beasley


2018 Fellow Carys Davies

2019 Frank O'Connor
Short Story Fellowship
applications now open

Deadline: 31st Jan 2019




The Cork International
Poetry Festival

March 19 - 23, 2019



The Cork International
Short Story Festival




The Gregory O'Donoghue
Poetry Competition

Results February 2019



The Southword Fiction
Chapbook Competition

Results January 2019


how to pass

The Seán Ó Faoláin
Short Story Competition

2018 winner How to Pass
by Louise Crimmins
will be in Southword 36



The Fool for Poetry
Chapbook Competition

2018 winners
1st: Katie Hale
2nd: Regina Melveny




Youtube channel



Words Ireland

The Munster Literature Centre
is a constituent member
of Words Ireland


Poetry International

Recent additions:

Michelle O'Sullivan
Paddy Bushe
Doireann Ní Gríofa
Paul Casey


The Munster Literature Centre

Frank O'Connor House, 84 Douglas Street, Cork, Ireland.

Tel. (353) 021 4312955, Email: munsterlit(AT)eircom(DOT)net

Irish Registered Charity No.12374