A~About Mark Roper
Mark Roper moved to Ireland from England in 1980. His poetry collections include The Hen Ark (Peterloo, 1990), which won the 1992 Aldeburgh Prize for best first collection; Catching The Light (Peterloo, 1997); and The Home Fire (Abbey Press, 1998). Reviewing the latter for The Irish Literary Supplement, Bill Tinley described Roper as “one of the most accomplished and engaging poets writing in Ireland at present.” Whereabouts was published in 2005 by Abbey Press & Peterloo; Even So: New & Selected Poems by Dedalus Press in 2008. His latest collection, A Gather of Shadow, Dedalus 2012, won the Michael Hartnett Award in 2014 and was shortlisted for The Irish Times Poetry Now Award in 2013.
Mark was Editor of Poetry Ireland for 1999. He was the recipient of Arts Council Bursaries in 2010 and 2013. The River Book: A Celebration of the Suir, a collaboration with photographer Paddy Dwan, was published, to much acclaim, in 2010. A second collaboration with Paddy Dwan, The Backstrand, was published in 2013. The Invader, an opera composed by Eric Sweeney to a libretto by Mark Roper, was premiered in Ireland in May 2014. He has also worked on collaborative ventures with photographer Margaret O’Brien-Moran, painter Susan Hughes and choreographer Libby Seward.
An experienced Creative Writing teacher, Mark has run courses and workshops in many different settings, including schools, prisons, and senior citizen centres. From September 2002 to May 2003 he was writer-in-residence at Waterford Regional Hospital. Since 2004, he has been a poetry mentor for the MFA in Creative Writing graduate program of Carlow University, Pittsburgh, a dual residency program in the U.S. and Ireland.