By Doireann Ní Ghríofa


Clasp is award-winning poet Doireann Ní Ghríofa’s first English-language collection of poems


Clasp is award-winning poet Doireann Ní Ghríofa’s first English-language collection of poems. In three sections entitled ‘Clasp’, ‘Cleave’ and ‘Clench’, Ní Ghríofa engages in a strikingly physical way with the world of her subject matter. The result is by times what one poem calls ‘A History in Hearts’, among other things an intimate exploration of love, childbirth and motherhood, and simultaneously a place of separation and anxiety. In one poem set in the boys’ home in Letterfrack, a place of undeniable terror, we see how, in the name of religion, “The earth holds small skulls like seeds”.

The final section of the book comprises a single poem, Seven Views of Cork City, which, swooping in and out of personal history, paints a convincing if sometimes unsettling portrait of the poet’s adopted city, and of urban life’s ubiquitous restraints on “our dream of speed”.

ISBN 978-1910251027 Paperback

140 x 216 mm, 74 pp
April 2015

Additional information

Weight .2 kg
Dimensions 216 × 140 mm

Product Detail

  • ISBN: : 9781910251027
  • Size: : 216 x 140 mm
  • Pages: : 74 pp
  • Published: : April 2015

About The Author


Doireann Ní Ghríofa (born Galway, 1981) is an award-winning bilingual writer, whose poems and prose essays have appeared in many Irish and international journals. She has published six books of poetry; her collections with Dedalus Press are Clasp (2015) and Lies (2018), a bilingual volume featuring her own English translations and original Irish language poems (first published in individual collections by Coiscéim). Her most recent prose publication is the bestseller A Ghost in the Throat (Tramp Press, 2020) which finds the eighteenth-century poet Eibhlín Dubh Ní Chonaill haunting the life of a contemporary young mother, prompting her to turn literary detective. Awards for Ní Ghríofa’s writing include a Lannan Literary Fellowship (USA), the Ostana Prize (Italy), a Seamus Heaney Fellowship (Queen’s University), and the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature, among others. "There is a fearlessness in Ní Ghríofa’s work: in the subjects she turns her keen gaze on, but also in the very music she lets play in the lines. A deep intelligence informs the strategies and approaches in the poems, and a generosity of spirit and openheartedness are signal qualities" — Paula Meehan, Ireland Professor of Poetry