Joan Newmann (Ireland) read at the 2008 John Hewitt International Summer School, alongside Imtiaz Dharker.
Joan is from County Armagh and was a member of the famed Philip Hobsbaum Belfast Group that included James Simmons and Seamus Heaney. “First Letter Home”, like Heaney's “Eleven Poems”, was published in pamphlet form by Michael Emerson of Queen's University Festival. In 1965, Joan was also featured in an advertisement for ‘New Irish Poetry’ in “Northern Review” along with Seamus Heaney, Michael Longley, Derek Mahon, and Steven Parker. Later publications include: “Suffer Little Children” (University of Ulster, 1992); “Circumcision Party” (HU Publications); “Coming of Age” (Blackstaff Press, 1995); and the chapbook, “Thin Ice” (Abbey Press, 1998).
Joan was the recipient of the Samhain International Poetry Festival’s Craobh na hÉigse Award in 2004 and has served as Writer in Residence at both the Verbal Arts Centre of Derry and the Northern Ireland Arts Council. With her daughter, Kate Newmann, she founded Summer Palace Press, based in Kilcar Co Donegal, with a remit to champion predominantly women poets. Arlen House published a joint venture with her daughter, “Belongings”, in 2007 and Joan has also published “Prone” (Summer Palace, 2007) and “Dead End” (Summer Palace, 2018). “A Rush of Blood to the Head” is forthcoming.
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