Ciaran Carson was born in Belfast in 1948, where he is Professor of Poetry at Queen’s University. He is the author of nine collections of poems, including Belfast Confetti, First Language, and Breaking News. His prose works include Last Night’s Fun, a book about Irish traditional music; The Star Factory, a memoir of Belfast; Fishing for Amber: A Long Story; and a novel, Shamrock Tea, which was long-listed for the 2001 Booker Prize. His translation of Dante’s Inferno won the 2002 Oxford Weidenfeld Translation prize, and his translation of Brian Merriman’s Cúirt an Mhéan Oíche (The Midnight Court) appeared in 2005. A translation of the Old Irish epic Táin Bó Cuailnge was published by Penguin Classics in 2007. For All We Know (2008) was a Poetry Book Society Choice. His Collected Poems was published in 2008. His most recent volumes of poetry are On the Night Watch (2009) and Until Before After (2010). A novel, The Pen Friend, appeared in 2009.
Ciaran Carson is a member of Aosdána, the affiliation of Irish artists. Among the prizes he has won are the T. S. Eliot Prize, the Irish Times Irish Literature Prize, the Cholmondeley Award, and the Forward Prize.
An interview appeared in The Guardian in 2009.