Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin and Paula Meehan
Every three years a poet of honour and distinction is chosen to represent the Chair as Ireland's Professor of Poetry. During their tenure the holder spends a year attached to each of the three universities and resides for a period of approximately eight weeks at each. While in residence, the poet gives informal workshops or readings, spends time working with students and performing outreach work and makes one formal presentation a year, usually in the form of a lecture.
Current Ireland Professor of Poetry
The current Ireland Professor of Poetry is Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin. Ní Chuilleanáin's appointment was announced by the President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins on Friday 27 May 2016.
Bob Collins, Chairman of The Ireland Chair of Poetry said,“The establishment of the Ireland Chair of Poetry was, and is, a powerful statement of the importance of the creative and the cultural in the lives of individuals and of the community. It has achieved more than might have been imagined when the idea was first conceived. The Chair celebrates the rich poetic tradition on the island of Ireland and reminds us of the important and prophetic voice of the contemporary community of poets. The support of the two Arts Councils and of the three Universities sustains it and guarantees its future”.
Previous Ireland Professors of Poetry
The following poets have previously served as the Ireland Professor of Poetry:
- John Montague
- Nuala Ní Dhomhnaill
- Paul Durcan
- Michael Longley
- Harry Clifton
- Paula Meehan
The Ireland Chair of Poetry is governed by an independent Board of Trustees representing the five sponsoring bodies and a distinguished poet. Since the Board was set up in 1998, it has evolved and changed ensuring fairness and equality. The current Trustees are: Mr. Bob Collins (Chairman), Ms. Sheila Pratschke, Prof. Mary Clayton, Prof. Nicholas Grene, Sir Donnell Deeny, Prof. Brian Walker, Mr. Michael Longley and Mr. Adrian Hall.