Michael Longley – Imprint: Writer in Profile

Loopline Collection, Documentary, Irish Culture
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30 mins

Irish poet Michael Longley was born in Belfast in 1939. In this episode, Longley discusses growing up in Northern Ireland where he wrote his first poems at sixteen to impress a girl he fancied. He then leads us to life in Trinity College, Dublin, his friendships with Derek Mahon and  Brendan Kennelly and the effects the Northern Ireland conflict had on his writing. He openly discusses the creative act of writing – poetry as human expression, its bravery, and its roots ‘in song and dance, in spell and in curse and in prayer’.

Imprint, a literature review programme, and its sister show Imprint: Writer in Profile screened on RTÉ1 for three seasons. Both were presented by Irish poet, writer and lecturer Theo Dorgan. Over the course of the Writer in Profile series Dorgan conducted extended, in-depth interviews with a wide range of Irish and international writers including Colm Tóibín, Bernard MacLaverty, Jennifer Johnston, Joseph O’Connor, Michael Longley, Doris Lessing, John Montague, Eavan Boland, Gore Vidal, Richard Ford and Margaret Atwood. This episode is part of The Loopline Collection Volume 1. To watch more of the collection click here.