Between January 2012 and January 2015 I was editor of the Irish section of the Poetry International website. Based in Rotterdam, and arising from the long-running festival of the same name, this website is an extraordinary resource.
The Irish domain has been dormant for the past year. But I understand it’s kicking off again in January under a new editor. It seems an opportune time, therefore, to look back at my own contribution. Listed below, then, are the poets I included during my tenure.
Each contributing country gets to update their domain three times a year, adding approximately twelve poets per annum. And looking back now I’m happy enough-ish with my selection, given this and various other constraints under which I had to operate.
I was careful to maintain gender parity during my tenure. The final list, however, reads Male: 14, Female: 10. The disparity was mainly due to the four-male-strong update I put together in late 2014. I had a really cool four-woman update in the pipeline, which would have seen parity restored. But my editorship ended before I could execute that plan.
Gender aside, I’m pleased with the list’s variety, that it extended the Irish domain -at least somewhat- into what might be classed as the experimental or modernist poetic traditions. I’m glad, too, that I had the opportunity to present poets writing in the Irish language. But I’m also reminded of constituencies under-served, of poets I longed to include but never quite got around to.
I’m reminded, too, of the professional, exacting central editors I worked with: Sarah Ream, Megen Molé and Mia You. Three extraordinary women. My thanks to them and to the hardworking staff at Rotterdam HQ, especially Jan Willem for his patience with multifarious formatting and layouts. They are all true servants of the art from!