Trócaire Poetry Ireland Poetry Competition 2022

Trócaire’s annual poetry competition, in association with Poetry Ireland, uses the arts to raise awareness about the leading global justice issues of our time. The annual competition opens for entries in spring each year. The competition is open to published poets, unpublished poets and spoken word poets.

Thandekile (31) with her daughter Nomatter (11), and son Forward (8), in Zimbabwe.  © Cynthia Matonhodze/Trócaire    

2022 Theme: ‘A Better Tomorrow’

This year, the competition explores the theme of building a better tomorrow, and how we can all contribute to it as part of a global community.  The effects of Covid-19 are still being felt throughout the world, particularly so in the developing world. People living in poverty, especially women, have been disproportionately affected by the long-term impacts of Covid-19, including a significant increase in gender-based violence.  

Throughout the world, we are seeing the very real effects of climate change. Severe weather events such as drought and floods have made it even more difficult for families in the developing world to produce food to nourish and sustain their children. 

Climate change makes us think, in a very real way, about the future of our earth and our society. And how we can work together to build a better tomorrow.  

Poets are encouraged to explore the theme, from a local to global perspective. 

Categories for entry

The competition is always FREE to enter and is open to adults at all stages in their writing careers. Many published poets have participated in the competition, including, in no particular order, Daragh Bradish, Eileen Casey, Joseph Horgan, David Butler, Lorraine Carey, Angela T. Carr, Nicki Griffin, Afric McGlinchey, John Donaghy, Dairena Ní Chinnéide, Ann Joyce, Karen O’Connor, Wilma Kenny, Mary Turley-McGrath, Eleanor Hooker, Jane Clarke, Geraldine Mitchell, David Mohan, and Breda Joy. 

Poems in English or Irish, written or spoken word, are welcome in the two categories:  

Published poets
Unpublished poets

Competition calendar

Entries open: Thursday 10 March 2022
Deadline for entries: Friday 6 May 2022
Celebration Event on Culture Night, 23 September 2022

How to enter

You can enter online at this link

Postal entries can be sent to: 
Trócaire Poetry Ireland Poetry Competition, 
Poetry Ireland, 
11 Parnell Square East, 
Dublin 1. 


The 2022 judging panel comprises poet Catherine Ann Cullen, Aidan Clifford, retired former director of the Curriculum Development Unit, and Trócaire’s Joanne McGarry.  



Winners: Two-week stay at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre, Annaghmakerrig OR a Tablet OR time in a recording studio to the value of €300 (for spoken word poets), plus subscription to Poetry Ireland Review for one year OR assessment of work through Poetry Ireland's Critical Assessment Service. 

Runners-up: Tickets to a literary festival to the value of €250, plus subscription to Poetry Ireland Review for one year OR assessment of work through Poetry Ireland's Critical Assessment Service. 

Highly commended: Book Token, plus subscription to Poetry Ireland Review for one year OR assessment of work through Poetry Ireland's Critical Assessment Service. 

(Note: Prizes must be claimed by 31 December 2022)

Competition Rules

»Download the competition rules

Previous Winning Entries

Booklets of the winning poems from previous years are available to download here:

» 2020: Standing Her Ground
» 2018: When Love Conquers Fear 
» 2017: Before the Storm
» 2016: Forced to Flee: This is our Exodus
» 2015: Feeling the Heat
» 2014: It's up to us
» 2013: Today's Children, Tomorrow's World

For updates about the competition, please visit us on our Facebook page: and
or follow us on Twitter: @PoetryIreland and @trocaire.