Winners of the Trócaire Poetry Ireland Poetry Competition 2022 announced

23rd August 2022

Poetry Ireland and Trócaire are delighted to announce the winners of the 2022 poetry competition which this year had the theme ‘A Better Tomorrow’.

The winners and runners-up are across two categories: Adult Published and Adult Unpublished. The winner of the Adult Published category is Lani O’Hanlon (Waterford) and the runner-up is Lorraine Carey (Kerry). The Adult Unpublished category winner is Sighle Meehan (Galway), with runners-up, Rory Duffy (Westmeath), Emma Tobin (Kildare) and Marguerite Doyle (Dublin).

Jane O’Hanlon from Poetry Ireland said, “I would like to express sincere thanks to everyone who supported the Trócaire Poetry Ireland Poetry Competition this year. The winning poems speak eloquently to urgent contemporary issues and yet manage to express hope in and for a ‘better tomorrow." 

The annual poetry competition raises awareness about current global citizenship, justice, ecological and equality issues. This year’s theme explored how we can build a better tomorrow, all contributing as part of a global community.

Joanne McGarry, Trócaire’s Campaigns and Volunteer Manager, said: “With entries from over 29 counties across the island of Ireland this year, and from as far afield as Canada, Australia, Nigeria and the U.S., we’d like to thank everyone who entered, the standard was superb. These wonderful poems highlight social justice and in turn increase awareness and understanding of the world we live in.” 

Poetry Ireland and Trócaire look forward to celebrating the winners of the competition with an in-person event, the first to take place since before the Covid pandemic, on Culture Night, Friday 23 September, in the Seamus Heaney Lecture Theatre, located in the Cregan Library on DCU's St. Patrick's Campus.

Poetry Ireland and Trócaire would like to thank the judges of this year’s competition:

Catherine Ann Cullen (Poetry Ireland Poet in Residence), Aidan Clifford, retired former director of the Curriculum Development Unit, and Joanne McGarry (Campaigns and Volunteer Manager at Trócaire).

Congratulations to all this year’s winners and runners-up and thank you to everyone who entered.


‘When I Visit Dalal’ by Lani O’Hanlon

‘Days Like These’ by Lorraine Carey


‘A Red Coat’ by Sighle Meehan

‘Half Life’ by Rory Duffy

‘Bright’ by Emma Tobin

‘Into the Light’ by Marguerite Doyle 

 For further information, contact:

Clare O’Sullivan, Communications Manager, Poetry Ireland
Or, Niamh McCarthy, Communications Officer, Trócaire

Poetry Ireland gratefully acknowledges the support of its principal funders The Arts Council / An Chomhairle Ealaíon and The Arts Council of Northern Ireland.


Lani O’Hanlon – Winner Published
Lani O' Hanlon is a writer, poet, creative writing facilitator and somatic movement therapist. She has an MA in creative writing from Lancaster University and her writing is published in various journals and anthologies including Poetry (Chicago) Portland Review, Poetry Ireland, Poetry Wales, The Irish Times, Southward, The Stinging Fly, Orbis, Abridged, Mslexia, Vanguard’s 14, and A New Ulster;  anthologies, Halleluiah for Forty-foot Women and Staying Human (Bloodaxe), Poems from Pandemia (Munster Literature Centre), Small Wonders (Dedalus Press), Washing Windows Too (Arlen House) and regularly broadcast on RTE’s Sunday Miscellany. 

Prizes and commendations include; Hennessey New Irish Writing, The Bridport prize, Hungry Hill's Poets Meet Politics and Poetry on the Lake

Lorraine Carey – Runner Up Published
Lorraine Carey’s poems are widely anthologised and published in Poetry Ireland Review, The Stony Thursday Book, Gyroscope Review, Orbis, Prole, Rust+Moth, One, The High Window, Ink Sweat & Tears, and One Hand Clapping among others. Longlisted in The National Poetry Competition 2019, she was selected for The Stinging Fly Summer School 2022 and has poetry forthcoming in Allium, Howl and Romance Options – an anthology of love poems from Dedalus Press. Originally from Greencastle, Donegal, she now lives in Kerry.

Sighle Meehan – Winner Unpublished
Sighle Meehan’s writing reflects her background in theatre and her life beside the sea. Although she mainly writes poetry, she has also written plays, a television drama documentary and short stories. Her poetry has been published in journals and anthologies including Poetry Ireland Review, Fish Anthology, Cyphers and New Welsh Poetry.

Rory Duffy – Runner Up Unpublished
Rory Duffy has had work published in several journals including Southword, CrannÓg, Ropes, Riptide, The Stony Thursday Book, A New Ulster, Skylight 47, Boyne Berries & The Cormorant. His short stories have been shortlisted in Sean O'Faoláin, PJ O'Connor, Frances MacManus, Cuirt, Bath Short Story Award, among others. In 2019 he won the Red Line Book Festival (Poetry) Prize and was second in the Strokestown Summer Poetry Award. In 2020 he was a nominee (poetry) in the Forward Prize. In 2021 he was selected for the Words Ireland National Mentoring Scheme. 

Emma Tobin – Runner Up Unpublished
Emma Tobin is a poet and science-fiction writer from County Kildare. They are the inaugural Irish winner of the Eavan Boland Emerging Poet Award and a previous winner of the Trocaire/Poetry Ireland Competition in the senior post-primary category. They are currently working on a PhD in Creative Writing at UCD.

Marguerite Doyle – Runner Up Unpublished
Marguerite Doyle graduated with an M.A. in Creative Writing from Dublin City University in 2020. She has been published in The Ogham Stone, Reliquiae, The Galway Review, Vallum, and The New Welsh Reader. Marguerite’s poetry was selected for inclusion in the Ireland Chair of Poetry Special Commemorative Anthology, Hold Open the Door and the Dedalus Press Anthology, Local Wonders: Poems of Our Immediate Surrounds. She has also been shortlisted for the Anthology Poetry Award.