Born in Cork in 1927, Patrick Galvin went overseas in 1943 to serve with the RAF during World War II. He lived in London until 1974, when he returned to Ireland.
His poetry collections include Heart of Grace (1957), Christ in London (1960), The Woodburners (1973), Man on the Porch (1980), Folktales for the General (1990) and The Death of Art O’Leary (1992). His New and Selected Poems was published by Cork University Press in 1996.
His plays include And Him Stretched, Cry the Believers, Nightfall to Belfast, The Last Burning, We Do It for Love, The Devil’s Own People and My Silver Bird. He has written seven plays for radio and has recorded seven albums of Irish ballads.
His three volumes of autobiography – Song for a Poor Boy: A Cork Childhood (1990), Song for a Raggy Boy (1991), and Song for a Fly Boy (2002) – were published together in one volume in 2002. His screen adaptation of Song for a Raggy Boy is due for cinema release in 2003.
He was awarded a Leverhume Fellowship as resident dramatist at the Lyric Theatre in Belfast from 1974 to 1978, and was resident writer with East Midlands (1980-82), Dun Laoghaire (1996), Portlaoise (1997), University College Cork (1998) and Kerry County Council (2002). He received the Irish-American Cultural Institute’s O’Shaughnessy Award for poetry in 1995.
He co-founded the Poetry Now Festival and the Munster Literature Centre, and he is currently editor of the Southword literary journal.