By Mary Noonan

The Fado House

Debut collection of poems from Cork based poet, winner of the Listowel Prize for best collection


Shortlisted for both the The Seamus Heaney Centre Prize for a First Collection, and The Strong/Shine Award, and the winner of the Listowel Prize for best unpublished collection, Mary Noonan’s debut volume of poems The Fado House introduces a poet of real achievement and great promise. Noonan’s poems are characterised by an intense musicality and a determinedly outward look, the range of the work (poems inspired by music, by visual art, by myth, by time abroad, and by the magic of family, friendships and love) always matched by the telling details of credible experience. Poems which treat of the loss of loved ones are handled with sensitivity, and her most affecting personal moments seem echoed in the translations of Baudelaire and de Nerval that further expand the reach of a book whose dominant tones are those of wonder and celebration.

“If a book is a house, then Mary Noonan’s first book of poems, The Fado House, is one inhabited by ghosts, speakers who are well acquainted with dark nights, lashing rain, and other causes of human suffering, but who return to the human realm to partake and revel in what the earth has to offer—the sensory wonders that fill Noonan’s richly textured lyrics.” — Hilary Sederis,

“Impassioned and vibrant, The Fado House is a collection that one can wholeheartedly recommend. It has depth, range, and endless resonance.” — The Poetry Shed

ISBN 9781906614577 paperback
140 x 216 mm
May 2012

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About The Author


Mary Noonan teaches French literature at University College Cork. Her poems have appeared in Poetry Review, Poetry Ireland Review, PN Review, The Dark Horse, Poetry London, The Spectator and The Threepenny Review. She won the Listowel Poetry Collection Prize in 2010 for the manuscript of her first collection. That collection – The Fado House (Dedalus Press, 2012) – was shortlisted for the Seamus Heaney Centre Prize and the Strong/Shine Award. In 2014, she was awarded an Arts Council of Ireland Literature Bursary. A limited edition pamphlet, Father (Bonnefant Press) was published in 2015. Also in 2015, she curated This Dust of Words, a poetry translation series in which contemporary European poets read with their English-language translators and discussed the process of translation. (Author photo by Linda Ibbotson)