The Munster Literature Centre is a not-for-profit organisation; all moneys raised from the competition benefits writers and writing.


Results for last year's competition available here. The winning and shortlisted poems appear in issue 38 of Southword, published in March 2020 and available to order here.

This competition will open again for entries on September 1st


About the Prize


Submission Guidelines

More About the Competition

Previous Winners


About the Prize

1st Prize
Residency (one week) at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre
Hotel accommodation & board at the Cork International Poetry Festival (March 2021)
Publication in Southword

2nd Prize
Publication in Southword

3rd Prize
Publication in Southword

Ten runners-up
Publication in Southword


The competition is open to original, unpublished and unbroadcast poems in the English language of 40 lines or fewer. The poem can be on any subject, in any style, by a writer of any nationality, living anywhere in the world. Translated work is not in the scope of this competition. Once entered, no alterations can be made to the submission.Simultaneous submissions are accepted but please notify us immediately should your work be accepted elsewhere.

Deadline: 30th November, 2020 (midnight). Entries will be accepted from the 31st August.

Cost of entry: €7 per poem or €30 for a batch of five. If you would like to submit more than five poems, please make more than one entry.

As the poem is judged anonymously, the entrant's name must not appear on poem pages.







Submission Guidelines


Send to: godcomp@munsterlit.ie
Subject: GOD entry


  1. The poem(s) for submission, with each poem in a seperate Word document (we cannot accept PDF format). Please use the title of the poem (or the first few words of the title) as the title of each document. As the competition is judged anonymously, please do not write your name or personal details anywhere on this document as this could lead to disqualification.
  2. A cover letter (separate Word document attached to the same email). The cover letter should include:
    - Your name
    - Poem title(s)
    - Email address
    - Phone number
    - Postal address
    - Image of PayPal receipt or the PayPal transaction ID number
    - How your heard about the competition
    - A brief bio (optional)
    Please ensure that this information is attached as a Word document and not in the body of the email.
  3. Payment of the entry fee can be made through the following payment portal:
Entries now closed



  1. Submission manuscript (typed). To ensure anonymity, please do not write your name or any other personal details on the manuscript. Each poem should be printed on a seperate page with no back to back printing.
  2. Cover letter as a seperate page, which includes:
    - Your name
    - Poem title(s)
    - Email address and/or phone number
    - Postal address
    - How your heard about the competition
    - A brief bio (optional)
  3. Payment: If you have paid through PayPal, please quote the PayPal transaction ID in your cover letter. Alternatively we accept cheques and bank drafts (see details below).
  4. Send to:
    The Gregory O'Donoghue International Poetry Competition,
    The Munster Literature Centre, Frank O'Connor House,
    84 Douglas Street,
    Cork, T12 X802
  5. Please DO NOT SEND ENTRIES BY REGISTERED POST. Unfortunately we are less likely to receive entries sent by registered post and your submission may be ineligible due to the delay incurred.
  6. If you would like us to send you confirmation of your postal entry, please include a self-addressed stamped postcard or envelope with an irish postage stamp. We will confirm the receipt of international entries via automatic email response.



PayPal will deduct the fee in your own currency. As proof of payment, please include an image of the receipt or quote the transaction ID in your cover letter. You do not need a PayPal account.

Entries now closed



  2. Bank drafts
  3. Other currencies: we can accept cheques and bank drafts in Euro, Pounds sterling (£7 for each poem or £30 for a batch of five) or US dollars ($8 for each poem or $35 for a batch of five)
  4. Postal order (Republic of Ireland only)
  5. Please note that we cannot accept cash payment

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Further Details

The Gregory O'Donoghue International Poetry Competition was first held in 2010. It is an poetry prize for a single poem, open to writers from around the world from August to November annually. Sponsored by the Munster Literature Centre, the prize is named in honour of the late Irish poet long associated with the Centre.

Due to the large volume of entries, the judge will not be able to notify the authors of non-winning poems or give individual feedback. A shortlist will be posted on our website in February 2021 and the winners will be announced during the Cork International Poetry Festival (March 2021). We recommend signing up for the Munster Literature Centre newsletter if you would like to be kept up to date with all competition developments directly.

If the winner chooses to come to Cork to collect their prize, the centre will pay for hotel accommodation, meals and drinks during the Cork International Poetry Festival (March 2021).

Prize winnings will be subject to exchange rates valid on the date payment is issued. The Munster Literature Centre is a not-for-profit institution, an officially registered charity in the Republic of Ireland (Charity. No. 12374). All entry fees received in this competition will be disbursed in prize money, judge's fee and to fund services the Centre provides to writers and readers.

The Tyrone Guthrie Centre www.tyroneguthrie.ie is again awarding a week-long residency to the first prize winner of the Gregory O'Donoghue Poetry Competition. The Tyrone Guthrie Centre at Annaghmakerrig is a residential workplace for artists, dedicated to supporting and facilitating creativity within a welcoming, home-like and trusted environment. The dates of the residency will be arranged between the writer themselves and the Tyrone Guthrie Centre.





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The winning and shortlisted poems of the Gregory O'Donoghue International Poetry Competition 2010 - 2018 can be read through Southword Online below. The Munster Literature Centre marked the return of Southword as an exclusively print publication with issue 35 in August 2018. The 2019 and 2020 winning and shortlisted poems feature in issues 36 and 38, available here.


Winning poems available to read on Southword Online:

Mark Wagenaar
Leila Chatti
2018 winner:
Robert Lipton
2017 winner:
Mark Wagenaar
2016 winner:
Leila Chatti
Breda Wall Ryan
Maya Popa
Judith Barrington
2015 winner:
Breda Wall Ryan
2014 winner:
Maya Popa
2013 winner:
Judith Barrington
Suji Kwock Kim
Sandra Ann Winters
John F Deane
2012 winner:
Suji Kwock Kim
2011 winner:
Sandra Ann Winters
2010 winner:
John F. Deane


Click here for results of past competitions, including runners-up and commendations




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

Tel. (353) 021 4312955 Email info@munsterlit.ie

Irish Registered Charity No.12374