Patients and staff in Irish hospitals to receive a ‘Menu of Poems’ for Poetry Day Ireland

18th April 2017

To celebrate Poetry Day Ireland on Thursday 27 April 2017, a Menu of Poems called ‘You. Just You’ will be distributed throughout Irish hospital wards, waiting rooms and other healthcare settings for patients, visitors and staff to enjoy. The poetry was selected by poet Yrsa Daley-Ward. Daley-Ward will be visiting Ireland for the Cúirt International Festival of Literature, to read at an event and to launch the Poems for Patience Series at University Hospital Galway.

Menu of Poems 2017 is produced by Galway University Hospitals Arts Trust in collaboration with Arts and Health Co-ordinators Ireland, Poetry Ireland and HSE Health Promotion and Improvement. Over 10,000 people in healthcare settings will receive the 2017 Menu, which includes poems by Naomi Shihab Nye, Alice Walker and Derek Walcott. The Menu is also available to anyone working in a healthcare facility to print and distribute in their own locations.

Since its conception in 2009, Menu of Poems has been a positive development in the lives of both patients and those who work in healthcare settings across Ireland. The poetry is circulated on meal trays in hospitals and participating healthcare providers are organising readings and workshops for Poetry Day Ireland.

Margaret Flannery, Arts Director at Galway University Hospitals Arts Trust, said: ‘It’s been a pleasure to work with Yrsa Daley-Ward on You. Just You. this year and I hope the collection will provide a moment of escape for whoever comes across them on their journey in hospital on Poetry Day.

Maureen Kennelly, Director of Poetry Ireland, said: ‘Poetry Ireland is delighted to be involved with the Menu of Poems project once again this year and to partner on an initiative that brings poetry to people’s bedside.  Our mission is to connect people with poetry and make it part of their everyday life.’

The following hospitals and centres are participating in Menu of Poems 2017: Arts for Health Partnership Programme, West Cork; Arts in Health at Cork University Hospital;  Arts Initiative in Mental Health Sligo Leitrim; Beehouse Arts; Galway, Mayo Roscommon Community Health Office; Galway University Hospitals Arts Trust and Saolta Health Care Group; Kildare County Council Arts and Health Programme; Naas General Hospital Arts Committee; National Centre for Arts and Health, Tallaght; South Tipperary General Hospital; South Tipperary Mental Health Services; St. Luke’s General Hospital, Kilkenny; University Limerick Hospitals Group; Waterford Healing Arts Trust; West Cork Mental Health Services Arts and Health Programme and Wexford General Hospital. 

For more information on Menu of Poems 2017, email

For information on Poetry Day Ireland visit 

For more information on Poems for Patience and the Cúirt International Festival of Literature visit