By Joseph Woods,

By Leeanne Quinn

Romance Options: Love Poems for Today

Romance Options is a major new anthology of contemporary love poems, the result of an open call to Irish and Ireland-based poets to consider the realities of our romantic, emotional and intimate lives today.


Romance Options is a major new anthology of contemporary love poems, the result of an open call to Irish and Ireland-based poets to consider the realities of our romantic, emotional and intimate lives today. Contributors include both well-known and established poets as well as a large number of up-and-coming voices, reflecting the diversity of a vibrant literary scene and a society in which difference is something to be embraced and celebrated.

For editors Leeanne Quinn and Joseph Woods: “This anthology is testament to the persistence of love as a vital and dynamic theme that has not only endured but evolved to meet the complexities of 21st century relationships. Love as represented here is not blind or naïve, exclusionary or solipsistic, but complex and self-aware, all-encompassing and diverse.These poems span the full trajectory of love and romantic life, and come from writers of all ages, identities, and orientations, all of whom have one thing in common: they love, or have loved.”


GRAHAM ALLEN Tomorrow * JOSEPH ALLEN Dorothea * ASHLEY Sappho, who is doing you wrong? * AMANDA BELL Valentine * MAUREEN BOYLE Cydnus * NICK BOYLE Clementines * DYLAN BRENNAN Stoneflower * ELLEN BRICKLEY Midweek * CHARLOTTE BUCKLEY Louisburgh * PADDY BUSHE Cómóradh Pósta / Wedding Anniversary * DAVID BUTLER Imbolc * DARAGH BYRNE And What of Love? * BYRNE KEANE Tapestry * CAREY Palomino * ANGELA T. CARR Quadratic Love Song * ANNE CASEY Love in a time of chaos, a cento * EILEEN CASEY Love in the time of Abba * LOUISE G. COLE Seeing as I am Blinded by the Truth * SHIA CONLON Frank * STEPHANIE CONN Making Beef Stew from Scratch * EMILY COOPER It has become one of those days * POLINA COSGRAVE A Test to Love the World * DEREK COYLE Carlow Poem #81 * ENDA COYLE-GREENE Anniversary * BERNIE CRAWFORD I’ve Been Missing You * PHILLIP CRYMBLE In Your Small Dream * CATHERINE ANN CULLEN Subsidence * EMILY CULLEN Your Old Letters * YVONNE CULLEN And the bird-shit ogham * MARTINA DALTON Because Her Wedding Had to Be Postponed * MAUREEN DALY Swan * PHILIP DAVISON Bowl of Fruit * STEPHEN DE BÚRCA Pomegranate Seeds * CELIA DE FRÉINE Dráma Deireadh Caidrimh * Drama of a Break-up * PATRICK DEELEY Paraphernalia * MAURICE DEVITT Unspoken * PATRICK DILLON Madonna of the Pint Glass * MOYRA DONALDSON 30th Wedding Anniversary * DARREN DONOHUE Faraway fields are too green and there’s a bull in one of them * KATHERINE DUFFY Choosing from the Archipelago * RORY DUFFY Half Life * DAN EGGS Tested In The Furnace of A Relationship * JAMIE FIELD Come Live With Me * VIVIANA FIORENTINO A Summer Place * KIT FRYATT Blades * CRÓNA GALLAGHER Achill * CATHERINE GANDER Matches Ghazal * ANGELA GARDNER Passage * TRACY GAUGHAN I’ve made an end of asking * MATTHEW GEDEN Zeno’s Paradox * SONYA GILDEA Hope Street, Dublin * RAY GIVANS The Way She Moved * JACKIE GORMAN I Thought of Those Captive Birds * ANGELA GRAHAM Just Friends * MARK GRANIER Crown Shyness * EVA GRIFFIN Romance Option * RICHARD HALPERIN Bird * CLODAGH HEALY Modern Day Flowers * RACHAEL HEGARTY Stonewall / Balla * CLAIRE HENNESSY Purse * AIDEEN HENRY The Shared Quotidian * GUSTAV HIBBETT Rococo * KEVIN HIGGINS Winter Coupling * CATHERINE HIGGINS-MOORE Farrago * DEIRDRE HINES Always * ELEANOR HOOKER Soundings from a Hart * LIZ HOUCHIN drinking tea in the garden after a sleepless night * ROSEMARY JENKINSON Oceanus * VIRGINIA KEANE Under Ruined Temple Michael * BEN KEATINGE The Folly of Koˇco Racin * PATRICK KEHOE Zenith / Zenith * SUSAN KELLY Long-distance Days * CLAIRE-LISE KIEFFER So much of love is spent waiting * HANNAH KIELY the stanza breaks are killing me * ALICE KINSELLA Playing House * BRIAN KIRK Belturbet Under Frost * SIMON LEWIS After Meeting in a Nightclub * AOIFE LYALL This page * NOELLE LYNSKEY Love Made Visible * SEÁN LYSAGHT Epigram * CATHERINE PHIL MACCARTHY Summertime * JOHN MACKENNA And * JIM MAGUIRE Shopping Centre Carpark, January * MÍCHEÁL MCCANN Romance Option * JAKI MCCARRICK Scarecrows * MAC MCCLUSKEY I’ll Love You Till Sunday * KATHLEEN MCCRACKEN Alaska * KAREN MCDONNELL Let Us Lie * AFRIC MCGLINCHEY This is our body * ELIZABETH MCINTOSH Epithalamium * ALAN MCMONAGLE After a Day * LAUREN MCNAMARA A Quaint 2016 Article * RAFAEL MENDES Our mint-flavoured lips kindled * KELLY MICHELS Litany of the Human Heart * GERALDINE MITCHELL Late Nesting * AUDREY MOLLOY Uncharted Watersd LUKE MORGAN Tattoo * PETE MULLINEAUX x * GERRY MURPHY Symposia * KIERAN FIONN MURPHY Night Walk, Sláidín * CHANDRIKA NARAYANAN-MOHAN Donegal * LAOIGHSEACH NÍ CHOISTEALBHA Dís / Pair * ÁINE NÍ GHLINN An Práta Deireanach / The Last Potato * LANI O’HANLON Touched * JEAN O’BRIEN Love Needs * TREASA O’BRIEN Winter in Costa Rica * EUGENE O’CONNELL Thin Air * NIAMH O’CONNELL The Dishwasher * NUALA O’CONNOR The Red Massey Ferguson * MARY O’DONNELL Jukkurpa * JAMIE O’HALLORAN Out of the Gutter, into the Frame * JUDY O’KANE Readers’ Night at the London Review Bookshop * NESSA O’MAHONY Love in the Sixth Age * MAEVE O’SULLIVAN Loaves * RORY O’SULLIVAN Sonnet * LOUISE OMER st germain boulevard * RUTH QUINLAN Mothlight * NELL REGAN You Are To Me * MARY RINGLAND Salvaged * TANVI ROBERTS We Do Not Speak Of Her * JANE ROBINSON Woven Boat * MARK ROPER Usage * JOHN SAUNDERS Promise * SOPHIE SEGURA Reformer * D’OR SEIFER Second Decade in Free Verse * JOHN W. SEXTON Hydrangeas * CHERRY SMYTH Out of Dazzle * GERARD SMYTH Like Byron’s Daughter * ROSS THOMPSON Princes Street Gardens, Edinburgh * EOGHAN TOTTEN Faint * MORGAN L. VENTURA Wildness * BENJAMIN WEBB Copula * GRACE WILENTZ Gift of the Magi * ANNIE WILLIAMS Oranges * MILENA WILLIAMSON Untitled Nude * JOSEPH WOODS Let’s get lost * ENDA WYLEY Great Big Bed *

10 October 2022
193 pp. 140 x 216 mm

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About The Author


JOSEPH WOODS was born in Drogheda in 1966. He now lives with his wife and daughter in Harare, Zimbabwe where he works as an independent writer. Woods’ peregrinations have involved extensive travels in Europe, Asia, Latin America and Sub-Saharan Africa; he has also lived in Kyoto, Japan and more recently in Yangon, Myanmar. After initial studies in biology and chemistry, Woods eventually took an MA in Poetry and subsequently became Poetry Ireland’s longest serving director until 2013 when he emigrated. Joseph Woods’ first collection, Sailing to Hokkaido (Worple Press, 2001) was awarded the Patrick Kavanagh Poetry Award and Bearings (Worple Press, 2005) followed. Dedalus Press reissued Woods' first two poetry collections in one volume entitled Cargo (2010), and have published his poetry since. Woods’ third collection Ocean Letters (Dedalus Press, 2011) when translated into Hungarian by Tomas Kabdebó, was awarded the Irodalmi Jelen Prize in 2013. The critically acclaimed Monsoon Diary (Dedalus Press, 2018), Woods’ fourth collection, was based in part on his experience of living in Burma. Woods has edited numerous poetry publications, including Our Shared Japan (Dedalus Press, 2007) co-edited with Irene de Angelis; an anthology of contemporary Irish poetry concerning Japan with an accompanying essay by Seamus Heaney. With Gerard Smyth he co-edited The Poetry Project, a web anthology of visual artists and filmmakers interpreting selected poems. Woods is consulting editor to the poetry journal Cyphers and has edited anthologies of Burmese and Zimbabwean poetry for the journal. In 2014 and 2019, Woods was a recipient of the Katherine and Patrick Kavanagh Fellowship, and in 2016 and 2020, he was awarded an Arts Council of Ireland Literature Bursary. In Zimbabwe, Woods has edited a history of the Irish in Rhodesia and Zimbabwe and is working on a life of Burmese chronicler, Maurice Collis. He frequently contributes to radio, newspapers and journals. “A poet with the whole world in his hip-pocket.” — James J McAuley


LEEANNE QUINN was born in Drogheda in 1978, and grew up there and in Monasterboice, Co. Louth. She studied at University College Dublin, University College Cork, and holds a PhD in American Literature from Trinity College Dublin. Her first collection of poetry, Before You, was published by Dedalus Press in 2012 and highly commended in the Forward Prize for Poetry 2013. Her second collection, Some Lives, was published in 2020 and noted as a ‘Book of the Year’ by The Irish Times and The Irish Independent. She is the recipient of three Arts Council Bursary awards, most recently in 2021. Her poems have been widely anthologised, appearing in Queering The Green: Post-2000 Queer Irish Poetry (Lifeboat Press, 2021), Hold Open the Door (UCD Press, 2020), Windharp: Poems of Ireland Since 1916 (Penguin, 2015), and The Forward Book of Poetry 2013 (Faber, 2012). With Joseph Woods, she co-edited Romance Options, an anthology of contemporary love poems from Ireland (Dedalus Press, 2022). She lives in Vienna, Austria.