Clarke, Austin

Austin Clarke
Austin Clarke. Image source

Austin Clarke was born in Dublin in 1896.

His collections include Collected Poems (London, George Allen & Unwin, 1936); Later Poems (Dublin, The Dolmen Press, 1961); Flight to Africa and Other Poems (The Dolmen Press, 1963); Mnemosyne Lay in Dust (The Dolmen Press, 1966); Old Fashioned Pilgrimage and Other Poems (The Dolmen Press, 1967); The Echo at Coole & Other Poems (The Dolmen Press, 1968); Collected Poems (The Dolmen Press, 1974); Selected Poems, edited by Hugh Maxton (Dublin, The Lilliput Press, 1991); and Collected Poems (Manchester, The Carcanet Press/Dublin, The Bridge Press, 2008).

A number of limited edition volumes were printed by The Dolmen Press for Clarke’s own imprint, The Bridge Press, including A Sermon on Swift and Other Poems (Dublin, The Bridge Press, 1968); Orphide and Other Poems (The Bridge Press, 1970); and Tiresias: A Poem (The Bridge Press, 1971). The Dolmen–published volumes were distributed outside Ireland by The Oxford University Press.

He wrote many verse plays, including The Son of Learning; The Flame (Edinburgh, School of Speech Training and Drama, 1932); Sister Eucharia (Dublin, Gate Theatre, 1939); Black Fast (Dublin, The Abbey Theatre, 1942); The Kiss (Dublin, The Peacock Theatre, 1942); As The Crow Flies (broadcast Radio Eireann, 1942); The Plot is Ready (The Peacock Theatre, 1943); The Viscount of Blarney ( Dublin, The Lyric Theatre Company, 1944); The Second Kiss (The Lyric Theatre Company, 1946); The Plot Succeeds (The Abbey Theatre, 1950); and The Moment Next to Nothing (Dublin, The Players Theatre, Trinity College, 1958). Most of these were performed by the Dublin Verse-Speaking Society, founded by Clarke and the poet Robert Farren in 1938, and the Lyric Theatre Company, and were published in one volume as Collected Plays (The Dolmen Press, 1963).

His selected plays are published as The Selected Plays of Austin Clarke, chosen and introduced by Mary Shine Thompson, (Buckhinghamshire, UK, Colin Smythe, 2006).

He died in Dublin in 1974.

Austin Clarke at Carcanet

Austin Clarke at The National Library of Ireland