Listowel Writers’ Week Pigott Poetry Prize Award 2020 Short List


Three poetry collections by Irish poets have been shortlisted for the 2020 Pigott Poetry Prize. This prize, in its 7th year, is Ireland’s largest monetary prize for a poetry collection by an Irish Poet, with the winner being awarded €10,000 and the two shortlisted finalists each receiving €1,000. 

Over 60 collections were submitted for this year’s award and adjudicator Ian McMillan had the task of selecting the shortlist of three on behalf of Listowel Writers’ Week.

Speaking about the adjudication, Poet Ian McMillan said “In terrible and turbulent times poetry can offer us a map out of lockdown and social distancing. Judging the competition reminded me of the power of language to enchant, to stimulate and to comfort. So many Irish poets are working at the height of their powers, wrestling with language to make it fit the world we live in, and it’s been marvellous to be part of that ongoing endeavour.”

Catherine Moylan, Chairperson of Listowel Writers’ Week revealed the shortlist. “I’m delighted to announce the three shortlisted collections for this year’s 2020 Pigott Poetry Prize; these wonderful collections are such treasures and show the wonderful talent and creativity that exists in this country.”

Pigeon Songs by Eoghan Walls
When the Tree Falls by Jane Clarke
What Planet by Miriam Gamble

The overall winner of the prize will be announced on the 27th May 2020. The Pigott Poetry Prize is sponsored by Mark Pigott KBE who said, “It is a blessing to be able to support this wonderful literary award and recognise the leading poets of Ireland. This is the 7th year of the prize and the competition is world class. I would like to thank our adjudicator, Ian McMillan, for his hard work and thorough review of all the entrants and congratulate him on his excellent selection of this year’s shortlist which showcases the beauty, diversity and strength of Irish Poetry”.

The full list of competition winners will be announced and posted on our website on the 27th May 2020.