By Pat Boran

The Next Life

The first new collection of poems in over a decade from poet and memoirist Pat Boran.
  • Available on Amazon Kindle HERE


Following his acclaimed prose memoir The Invisible Prison, Pat Boran’s first full-length collection of poems in over a decade sees him explore questions of love, belonging and connection, recognising that small and great challenges alike may be entry points to new beginnings, and that the instinct to sing and praise has never been more relevant or crucial. Despite echoing the promise of religious belief, The Next Life of the title is entirely to be found in the here-and-now and the near-to-hand, in the play of sparrows on a lawn, the death-exploring game of his two small children (‘Let’s Die’), and in the trust and faith of lovers whispering together “words never uttered before”.

‘Boran surveys death, childhood, and the plentiful literary resources of his own backyard in his latest collection of poems. His language is simple and apt, easing the reader into vivid images of his Irish setting and outlining the roles of father and child with charming wit. Boran treats subjects as grave as mortality and faith with calm, musical elegance.’
World Literature Today

“Lucid, limpid – Pat Boran bears comparison with Tranströmer in that he too often makes a whole out of a pair of alien concepts. Except the pupil, if he is such, here exceeds the master, grabbing a notion and our hand and taking us running with it… At times his poems, Girl Gardening for instance, verge on the simply beautiful, become — a description rarely applied to poetry itself — sheer poetry.”
— Sam Smith, The Journal (UK)

ISBN 978 1 906614 553 Paperback
216 x 140 mm, 102 pp
September 2012

Additional information

Weight .15 kg
Dimensions 216 × 140 mm

Product Detail

  • ISBN: : 9781906614553
  • Size: : 140 x 216 mm
  • Pages: : 102 pp
  • Published: : 2012

About The Author


PAT BORAN was born in 1963 in Portlaoise, in the Irish midlands, and has long since lived in Dublin. He has held a number of posts as Writer-in-Residence with libraries and third-level institutions. He has published more than a dozen books of poetry and prose, most recently Then Again (Dedalus Press, 2019) and Waveforms: Bull Island Haiku (Orange Crate Books, 2016) with photographs by the author. A Man Is Only As Good: A Pocket Selected Poems was published in 2017 by Orange Crate Books. Editions of his poetry have been published in Italian, Hungarian, Macedonian and Portuguese, with further works in progress. Pat Boran's non-fiction includes the popular writers' handbook The Portable Creative Writing Workshop (various editions) and A Short History of Dublin (Mercier Press). His humorous memoir The Invisible Prison: Scenes from an Irish Childhood, was published by Dedalus Press in 2009 and published in Italian as Un'Infanzia Irlandese in 2019 by Edizioni Kolibris. A former editor of Poetry Ireland Review and a former presenter of The Poetry Programme and The Enchanted Way on RTÉ Radio 1, Pat Boran has edited numerous anthologies, among them Wingspan: A Dedalus Sampler (2006), Flowing, Still: Irish Poets on Irish Poetry (2009), The Bee-Loud Glade (2009), Shine On: Irish writers supporting those affected by mental ill health (2011), the 2014 Dublin One City, One Book choice If Ever You Go: A Map of Dublin in Poetry and Song (with co-editor Gerard Smyth) and, with co-editor Eugene O'Connell, The Deep Heart's Core: Irish Poets Revisit a Touchstone Poem (2017). During lockdown in Spring 2020 he edited and produced The Word Ark: A Pocket Book of Animal Poems, illustrated by the Sicilian artist Gaetano Tranchino. Pat Boran’s distinctions include The Patrick Kavanagh Award in 1989 and the US-based Lawrence O'Shaughnessy Poetry Award in 2008. He is a member of Aosdána, the Irish affiliation of creative artists. (See also