Patrick Cotter

Perplexed Skin


9781903631546 hardback

9781903631843 paperback

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shortlisted for the Shine Poetry Award


Patrick Cotter’s inventive imagination treats tragedy laced with humour and love untinged by sentimentality. A dog which has learnt to sing songs by Henry Purcell, a ghost which haunts the pissoir of a modern city centre pub, a man who waits until Judgement Day to take his own life, characters as various as these occupy brief narratives that weave in and out of sequences where Eros and elegy predominate. Here are poems which belong to an emerging Irish tradition more informed by Berlin or Warsaw than Hull or Belfast.

Cotter has published widely in periodicals, chapbooks and anthologies since the 1980s. Perplexed Skin is his long-awaited début collection.

Patrick Cotter was born in Cork in 1963 where he continues to live and work as director of the Munster Literature Centre. He has published poems in numerous periodicals, anthologies and chapbooks including A Misogynist’s Blue Nightmare (Dublin, Raven Arts Press, 1990) and The True Story of Aoife and Lir’s Children (Cork, Three Spires Press, 2002). His translations of various German poets have been published in journals and his translations of the Estonian Surrealist poet Andres Ehin were collected in Moosebeetle Swallow (Cork, Southword Editions, 2005). Cotter’s own poems have been translated and published in Italy, Spain and Sweden. Återuppståndelser (Resurrections) a selection of Cotter’s poems translated into various Scandinavian languages was published in Gothenburg in 2007. His work has been shortlisted for both the Hennessy Award and the Patrick Kavanagh Award.