Catherine Phil MacCarthy

Catherine Phil MacCarthy is a native of Crecora, Co Limerick and has lived in Sandymount, Dublin since 1987. She has published four collections of poetry, and a novel, and is a free-lance tutor in Poetry and Creative Writing. Her poems explore from several angles the idea of ‘threshold’ or ‘the liminal’, the state of being in transition from one moment to the next.

Recent poems are included in The Herald, Scotland, Poem of the Day, edited by Lesley Duncan, and “Singer” and “Skojcan Journey” on RTÉ Lyric fm Poetry File. Her essay “The Island of Poetry” is published in New Hibernia Review, Fómhar/Autumn 2016, edited by James S. Rogers.


The Invisible Threshold

The Invisible Threshold


Suntrap (2007)

The Blue Globe

the blue globe (1998)

How High The Moon

How High The Moon

One Room An Everywhere

One Room An Everywhere (2003)

This Hour of the Tide

This Hour of the Tide

For more details on these publications, click the cover thumbnails.

“Magu and the Deer”

In her left hand, she took hold of one ear,
now warm and slippery to grasp,
the thong she’d strung round his wild neck
restraining him. She strolls back home
hauling the live protesting weight,
head high, breasts proud, back straight,
hair, drawn tight from her noble brow,
through pines, so tall she hears trunks creak.
Her skirt is of mail, like any warrior,
she carries two arrows propped on shoulder,
the bow’s a snake on her arm.
This path she reads with closed eyes.
Ears tuned to the night-forest, her lover’s step,
in such shoes as these, she’ll walk on water.

Published in Lute & Drum, Issue 12, A Quarterly of the Arts, Durham, North Carolina (web link).