Born in Belfast in 1950, she studied at Queen's University, where she later became writer-in-residence and currently runs the poetry graduate workshop. Her collections of poetry have been widely published in the U.S. and France, and include The Flower Master (1982), Venus and the Rain (1984), On Ballycastle Beach (1988), Marconi's Cottage (1991), Captain Lavender (1994), Selected Poems (1997), Shelmalier (1998), Drawing Ballerinas (2001) and The Face of the Earth (2002). Her work has earned numerous accolades and awards, including the Eric Gregory Award (1980), the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature (1982), the Alice Hunt Bartlett Award (1983), the Cheltenham Award (1989), the Bass Ireland Award for Literature (1991), and the Ireland Funds Literary Award (1998).
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