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.

“Sotto Voce”

How clever the beech hedge —
still wearing a winter coat, leaves
crisp as onion skins, long into April.
It stands grappling with the breeze,
torn leaves scudding across cut grass —
amid plum and cherry blossom,
the white magnolia, formal as china —
as if it had outlived its season.
An old woman, oblivious of fashion
in a garden full of birdsong
whispers, who cares about time?
From my roots the sap extends,
buds hold tight as needles.
Come May, I’ll yield to tender green.

(from The Invisible Threshold, Dedalus Press, Dublin, 2012 — see link here for more details)