Gregory O’Donoghue International Poetry Competition
Open for entries 1 September – 30 November
Line limit: 40
Closing date: 30th November (midnight)
Entry fee: €7 per poem or €30 for a batch of five
The competition is open to original, unpublished and unbroadcast poems in the English language of 40 lines or fewer.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.
- Featured reading at the Cork International Poetry Festival (with four-night hotel stay and full board)
- Featured on the Southword Poetry Podcast
- Publication in Southword
- Publication in Southword
Send to: email@example.com
Subject: GOD entry
Attach the poem(s) for submission, with each poem attached separately (Word / RTF/ ODT – we cannot accept PDFs). 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, we request that you do not write your name or personal details anywhere on this document.
Attach the cover letter (separate text document attached to the same email, not in the body of the email). The cover letter should include:
- Your name
- Poem title(s)
- Email address
- Email associated with your PayPal account (if different from your contact 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)
Payment of the entry fee can be made through PayPal below. PayPal will deduct the fee in your own currency.
- Poem(s) for submission (typed). To ensure anonymity, please do not write your name or any other personal details on the page. Each poem should be printed on a separate page with no back to back printing.
- Cover letter: see required details above. Cover letter should be on a separate page to ensure anonymity.
- Payment: If you have paid through PayPal, just quote the PayPal transaction ID. Alternatively, we accept cheques or bank drafts payable to the “Munster Literature Centre” in Euro, U.S Dollars or Pounds Sterling at a rate of €7 EUR per poem (or €30 EUR for a batch of five), $7 USD per poem (or $30 USD for a batch of five), or £6 GBP per poem (or £25 GBP for a batch of five). We also accept postal orders from the Republic of Ireland only. Please note that we cannot accept cash payment or Western Union money orders.
- Send to:
Gregory O’Donoghue Competition,
The Munster Literature Centre,
84 Douglas Street,
Cork, T12 X802
- 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.
- If you would like us to send you confirmation of your postal entry, please include a self-addressed stamped postcard or envelope (if posted within Ireland). We can confirm the receipt of international entries via email.
- Postal entries postmarked on or before 31st November (even if received by us after the deadline) will be accepted.
In a social justice initiative, the Munster Literature Centre is offering free entries of two poems each for thirty poets currently residing in a developing country (Africa, Central and South America, South East Asia, the Philippines, in the main) who do not have the financial means to pay the entrance fee for this year’s Gregory O’Donoghue International Poetry Competition. The places are offered on a trust basis. If you can afford the fee, we implore you not to use this facility as you will be depriving someone who really needs it. Only one free entry of two poems per person is allowed. Anyone who submits more than one free entry of two poems will have all their entries disqualified.
The above Submittable portal will bring you to the fee-free submission option. Entries will not be accepted by other means outside of this time. The portal will close automatically when 30 entries have been received. Prepare in advance the following information, ready to input into an online form (copy and paste) as soon as the submission opens on 1st September (12 p.m. midday Irish Standard Time).
- Your name
- Titles of your poems (maximum of two)
- Your complete postal address
- Your email address
- Your complete phone number (including country code)
You will need to upload two documents:
- Cover letter containing a bio note and the same information listed above
- Your poems, maximum of two, each with a maximum of 40 lines in Word or other text documents – we cannot accept PDFs. 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, we request that you do not write your name or personal details anywhere on this document.
No changes to entries can be made after they have been submitted. The Submittable portal is for fees-free entries only.
More about the competition
The Gregory O’Donoghue International Poetry Competition was first held in 2010. It is a poetry prize for a single poem, open to writers from around the world from September 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 entries or give individual feedback. A shortlist will be posted on our website homepage by late February / early March, with winners and runners-up contacted contacted before the public announcement. We recommend following us on social media or signing up for our newsletter to stay up to date with all competition developments directly:
Join Our Mailing List
The Munster Literature Centre is a not-for-profit organisation; all money raised from the competition benefits writers and writing.
|2023||1st Prize||Jenny Mitchell||When Our Mother Dies||Issue 44|
|2nd Prize||Yesol Kim||Burying Grandfather|
|3rd Prize||Never||Judith H. Montgomery|
|2022||1st Prize||Timothy McBride||The Last Kodak Moment||Issue 42|
|2nd Prize||James Finnegan||Operating Room|
|3rd Prize||Seán Hickey||Ruritanian Episode: A Fable of Sorts|
|2021||1st Prize||Nicholas Hogg||Concerto||Issue 40|
|2nd Prize||Damen O’Brien||A Smallholding|
|3rd Prize||Gerry Boland||The Dog, The Accordion and The Stars|
|2020||1st Prize||Jennifer Saunders||Crosswalk||Issue 38|
|2nd Prize||Chris Burke||The mighty salmon|
|3rd Prize||Jed Myers||Lastness|
|2019||1st Prize||Shangyang Fang||Argument of Situations||Issue 36|
|2nd Prize||Ron Carey||László Kovács and His Sons Cross the Border|
|3rd Prize||Chloe Wilson||At the Torturers’ Convention|
|2018||1st Prize||Robert Lipton||Official Story||Issue 34 (online)|
|2nd Prize||Majella Kelly||Portrait of the City with Mastectomy|
|3rd Prize||Kim Addonizio||Black Hour Blues|
|2017||1st Prize||Mark Wagenaar||Late Song||Issue 31A (online)|
|2nd Prize||Alan Garvey||Tara’s Thong|
|3rd Prize||Suzanne Cleary||I Have Never Slept with an Animal|
|2016||1st Prize||Leila Chatti||After Another Attempt at Eighteen||Issue 29A (online)|
|2nd Prize||Michael Derrick Hudson||The Invisible Man’s Blind Date|
|3rd Prize||James O’Sullivan||Different Kinds of Life|
|2015||1st Prize||Breda Wall-Ryan||Self Portrait in the Convex Bulge of a Hare’s Eye||Issue 27A (online)|
|2nd Prize||Caitlin Cowan||Love Meter|
|3rd Prize||Jane Satterfield||Radio Clash|
|2014||1st Prize||Maya C. Popa||Hummingbird||Issue 25A (online)|
|2nd Prize||Paula Cunningham||The Weather in the Mournes|
|3rd Prize||Matthew Sweeney||Benito|
|2013||1st Prize||Judith Barrington||The Conversation||Issue 23A (online)|
|2nd Prize||Gerry Boland||in the space between|
|3rd Prize||Maya C. Popa||Sashimi|
|2012||1st Prize||Suji Kwock Kim||Sonogram Song||Issue 21A (online)|
|2nd Prize||Alinda Wasner||Ode to the Night and the Morning Following an All-Day of Arguing|
|3rd Prize||Tom Moore||Meteorites|
|2011||1st Prize||Sandra Ann Winters||Death of Alaska||Issue 19A (online)|
|2nd Prize||Tadhg Russell||Superstition|
|3rd Prize||Mike Casey||Bulloch Harbour, Winter 09|
|2010||1st Prize||John F. Deane||Shoemaker||Issue 17A (online)|
|2nd Prize||Siobhan Campbell||Clew Bay from the Reek|
|3rd Prize||Patrick Deeley||Geezer|