Born in Connemara, Co. Galway, in 1954, Mary O’Malley studied at University College Galway, where she teaches on the arts administration course. She also taught at the University of Lisbon, Portugal, where she lived for several years.
Her collections of poetry include A Consideration of Silk (1990), Where the Rocks Float (1993), The Knife in the Wave (1997), Asylum Road (2001) and The Boning Hall: New and Selected Poems (2002).
For many years she was on the organising committee for the Cúirt Festival, and she continues to work with the Clifden Community School Festival, the Letterfrack Environmental Centre, and a writing group in the Aran Islands. She frequently holds readings of her poetry on the European continent and in the U.S., often with traditional Irish and classical musicians.
She is currently writing a memoir of place, and a series of poems about music and musicians. She received a Hennessey Award in 1990. She lives in the Moycullen Gaeltacht.