Poems for Patience is a long-running series by Saolta Arts in which poems are exhibited on the Arts Corridor of University Hospital Galway and then displayed in waiting areas throughout Galway University Hospitals. In 2023, Poems for Patience will also be distributed to Saolta public hospitals in Ballinasloe, Castlebar, Roscommon, Sligo and Letterkenny.
Over the past nineteen years the series has featured poems by leading Irish and international poets such as Seamus Heaney, Philip Schultz, Jane Hirschfield, Michael Longley, Naomi Shihab Nye, Vona Groarke, Tess Gallagher and many more. This year Poems for Patience will be selected and introduced by Paul Maddern.
Saolta Arts is hopeful that the poetry disseminated throughout the hospitals will give people pause for reflection and space for hope in both those joyful celebratory moments as well as the all too often times of pain or worry.
In recent years Saolta Arts have run a poetry competition alongside Poems for Patience. The winning poem from the 2023 competition will be included in the Poems for Patience Poetry Collection and the winner will be invited to read their poem at the launch, introduced by competition judge Susan Millar Dumars.
Kevin Higgins, writer in residence at Galway University Hospitals, who judged the poetry competition since its inception in 2013, passed away earlier this year. He will be remembered at the launch; one of his poems will be included in the collection and there will be a reflection on his residency.
Poems for Patience Launch
The Poems for Patience launch will take place at University Hospital Galway on 18 April, subject to Covid-19 guidelines. Tickets are limited to control numbers. Register here.
Poems for Patience is a Saolta Arts initiative in partnership with Cúirt International Festival of Literature. The 2023 festival runs from 17 – 23 April.
Paul Maddern was born in Bermuda and has lived in Ireland since 2000. He is the editor of Queering the Green: Post-2001 Queer Irish Poetry (Lifeboat Press, 2021) and has four publications with Templar Poetry: Kelpdings (2009); The Beachcomber’s Report (2010); Pilgrimage (2017); and The Tipping Line (2018). He is the recipient of two Bermuda Government Literary Awards and his poem, ‘Effacé’, is on the Northern Irish GCSE syllabus. He was teaching Fellow in Creative Writing with the University of Leeds for three years and now owns and operates The River Mill Writers Retreat in County Down.