Poems for Patience is a long running series which, over the past nineteen years has featured poems by leading Irish and international poets such as Seamus Heaney, Philip Schultz, Jane Hirschfield, Michael Longley, Naomi Shihab Nye, Vona Groarke,Tess Gallagher and many more.

This year Poems for Patience will be selected and introduced by Paul Maddern.

The poems, after featuring in an exhibition on the Arts Corridor in University Hospital Galway, are then displayed in waiting areas throughout Galway University Hospitals and in 2023 will also be distributed to our public hospitals in Ballinasloe, Castlebar, Roscommon, Sligo and Letterkenny. Saolta Arts is hopeful that the poetry disseminated throughout the hospitals will give people pause for reflection and space for hope in both those joyful celebratory moments as well as the all too often times of pain or worry. 

In recent years Saolta Arts have run a poetry competition alongside Poems for Patience. The winning poem from the 2023 competition will be included in the Poems for Patience Poetry Collection and the winner will be invited to read their poem at the launch and introduced by competition judge Susan Millar Dumars.

Sadly our writer in residence, who judged the competition since its inception in 2013, Kevin Higgins passed away earlier this year. We will remember him on the day too when we include one of Kevin’s poems in the permanent collection and reflect on his residency.

Paul Maddern was born in Bermuda. He is the editor of Queering the Green: Post-2000 Queer Irish Poetry (Lifeboat Press, 2021) and has four publications with Templar Poetry: Kelpdings (2009); The Beachcomber’s Report (2010); Pilgrimage (2017); and The Tipping Line (2018). He is the recipient of two Bermuda Government Literary Awards and his poem, ‘Effacé’, is on the Northern Irish GCSE syllabus. He was teaching Fellow in Creative Writing with the University of Leeds for three years and now owns and operates The River Mill Writers Retreat in Co Down.

Event Location

University Hospital Galway

Newcastle Rd, Galway, H91 YR71

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Step free venue with accessible bathroom available. Accessible parking available on the hospital grounds. There is no Loop system.