SHORTLIST Fish Poetry Prize 2013

117 poems shortlisted
(1,752 submitted in total)

Autumn Sestina Adam Tamashasky
Nativity rap Alison Leonard
All I Have to Do Is Dream, side B Amy Williamson
sunset Andreea Laptes
Kirk and His Wife Andy Jenkins
A & E (Biology Lesson) Andy Jenkins
Against Forgetting Andy Kissane
Back Again C.P. O’Donnell
God Always Geometrizes Caoilinn Hughes
“Dance” – after Yehudit Arnon Carol Dine
Wraith Catherine Bateson
Mind What You Say: The 1911 Census Celia McGovern
Rain Shadow Chris Wilde
Liberty Lines Clare Whitej-Sullivan
The Last Soldier Out Dan Speers
The Apple Tree Dana Robbins
Good Friday Daniel Gustafsson
Nativity Daniel Gustafsson
Emily Dickenson’s Joke Book David H W Grubb
The Leg Shaver’s Convention David H W Grubb
At The Marine Hotel Deirdre Shanahan
Backyard Blues Deniz Oygur
Retail Therapy Des Kavanagh
Old Men in the Mesquite Donnelle McKaskle
Untethered Emma Harding
Opening a giant water melon eoin hegarty
Memories & Hunger, a survey Eric Pitty
On Coolnamona Bog Frank Farrelly
Tangle Ginny Lowe Connors
Not Quite Nineveh Gretchen Friel
I am fat and somehwat old H Falconer
Waves Helen Newdick
Visiting Mother’s Grand Canyon Holly Stone
After the Deluge Iris Woodford
…Paul/wants a job in the Post Office/selling stamps… Ita O’Donovan
Mother and Child Jacqueline P Haskell
Fish story jane williams
Old Friends jane williams
A Year Later Jean Tuomey
Standing Outside the Old Place Jed Myers
The Betrayal Jennifer Kivikko
Missy’s Corsage Joanna Campbell
Chisel Jonah Sullivan
Comb Jonah Sullivan
Calvary Julie Watts
The Warrior karen mcsorley
Taken Karen O’Connor
A Song of Leaving karla morton
Picking Fish Kat Bernhardt
The Nick of Time Kate Newmann
The Lost World Kathleen Spivack
Pins Kita Kita Shantiris
Darting Light Kita Kita Shantiris
Beyond Fort Worth Kita Kita Shantiris
In Charge (My Wendy, With Cancer) Kristina Borjesson
Widow’s Walk Laura Lucas
How Easy to Love Leland Whipple
Margie Miller Lenora Oderkirk Steele
Vanishing Point Lisa Jacobson
Wild Louise McKenna
We Just Want To Get To Know You M. A. Yates
El Pacto de Olvido (The Pact of Forgetting) Mark Fiddes
A Vulva for the Pope Mark Fiddes
Revenge of the Polter-grannies Mark Fiddes
On the T Mark Jensen
i need to see a man about a scythe mary woodward
Incunabula Maureen Boyle
Platoon Michael Sukach
They Steal Things michelle brock
SIMI Nick McCarty
SIMI Nick McCarty
on the level nick pemberton
A Daughter’s Kaddish Niki Nymark
Winter Nuptials Noel Monahan
The Knife Sharpener Nora McGillen
Bloody Sunday Nora McGillen
aged four Norm Neill
unjust deserts Norm Neill
The Awakening Padraic O’Dowd
A Gift From the Dead Sea Patricia O’Heare
Moving Day Patti Trimble
Defence of the Realm (A Mobile Text). Paul Higgins
Cubits Paul Michel
Bullpen: US General Life Paula Brancato
Portrait of Jean Rhys, 1979 Peter Bakowski
Statues Peter Branson
Poet, all we Ask Phyllis Jean Green
The Break Rachel Fenton
Haiku (for the Ravenous) Richard Scarsbrook
Leaving St Fillans Robert Arnott
Mayo Mead Robyn Rowland
The Fields Ron Carey
Jazz Sonnet In Spring Ron Howland
Iphigenia Rosa Watkinson
My Galway German Girl Seamus Scanlon
carrik-a rede sharon flynn
Leaving Sharon Foley
Widow Sharon Foley
Dandelion Sharon Foley
Trying to Keep Quiet Simon Peter Eggertsen
Hawking’s Next Equation Simon Peter Eggertsen
And a Man Stepped Out Sinéad Cotter
China Doll Siobhan Harte
Precious Little Steven Duggan
All Art is Analogy Sue Cartledge
Down the Rabbit Hole (after Dali) Sue Morgan
Critical Thinking Susan Browne
Great Blue Heron susan hudson
Sea Windows Susan Wallace
Fishing With Father Tanvir Bush
Salt Marsh Express Terry Dawson
The half-life of fathers Vanessa Gebbie
The Secret Wayne Price
Loyalties Wayne Price
Sometimes Will Fish
How to make it Will Johnson

Fish Books

Fish Anthology 2019

Fish Anthology 2018

The standard is high, in terms of the emotional impact these writers managed to wring from just a few pages. – Billy O’Callaghan

Loop-de-loopy, fizz, and dazzle … unique and compelling—compressed, expansive, and surprising. – Sherrie Flick

Every page oozes with a sense of place and time. – Marti Leimbach

Energetic, dense with detail … engages us in the act of seeing, reminds us that attention is itself a form of praise. – Ellen Bass

Fish Anthology 2017

Fish Anthology 2017

Dead Souls has the magic surplus of meaning that characterises fine examples of the form – Neel Mukherjee
I was looking for terrific writing of course – something Fish attracts in spades, and I was richly rewarded right across the spectrum – Vanessa Gebbie
Really excellent – skilfully woven – Chris Stewart
Remarkable – Jo Shapcott


Fish Anthology 2016

The practitioners of the art of brevity and super-brevity whose work is in this book have mastered the skills and distilled and double-distilled their work like the finest whiskey.

Sunrise Sunset by Tina Pisco

Sunrise Sunset

€12  (incl. p&p)   Sunrise Sunset by Tina Pisco Read Irish Times review by Claire Looby Surreal, sad, zany, funny, Tina Pisco’s stories are drawn from gritty experience as much as the swirling clouds of the imagination.  An astute, empathetic, sometimes savage observer, she brings her characters to life. They dance themselves onto the pages, […]

Fish Anthology 2015

Fish Anthology 2015

How do we transform personal experience of pain into literature? How do we create and then chisel away at those images of others, of loss, of suffering, of unspeakable helplessness so that they become works of art that aim for a shared humanity? The pieces selected here seem to prompt all these questions and the best of them offer some great answers.
– Carmen Bugan.

Fish Anthology 2014

Fish Anthology 2014

What a high standard all round – of craft, imagination and originality: and what a wide range of feeling and vision.
Ruth Padel

I was struck by how funny many of the stories are, several of them joyously so – they are madcap and eccentric and great fun. Others – despite restrained and elegant prose – managed to be devastating. All of them are the work of writers with talent.
Claire Kilroy

Fish Anthology 2013

Fish Anthology 2013

The writing comes first, the bottom line comes last. And sandwiched between is an eye for the innovative, the inventive and the extraordinary.


Fish Anthology 2012

A new collection from around the globe: innovative, exciting, invigorating work from the writers and poets who will be making waves for some time to come. David Mitchell, Michael Collins, David Shields and Billy Collins selected the stories, flash fiction, memoirs and poems in this anthology.


Fish Anthology 2011

Reading the one page stories I was a little dazzled, and disappointed that I couldn’t give the prize to everybody. It’s such a tight format, every word must count, every punctuation mark. ‘The Long Wet Grass’ is a masterly bit of story telling … I still can’t get it out of my mind.
– Chris Stewart


Fish Anthology 2010

The perfectly achieved story transcends the limitations of space with profundity and insight. What I look for in fiction, of whatever length, is authenticity and intensity of feeling. I demand to be moved, to be transported, to be introduced into other lives. The stories I have selected for this anthology have managed this. – Ronan Bennett, Short Story Judge.


Fish Anthology 2009 – Ten Pint Ted

I sing those who are published here – they have done a very fine job. It is difficult to create from dust, which is what writers do. It is an honour to have read your work. – Colum McCann


Fish Anthology 2008 – Harlem River Blues

The entries into this year’s Fish Short Story Prize were universally strong. From these the judges have selected winners, we believe, of exceptional virtue. – Carlo Gebler


Fish Anthology 2007

I was amazed and delighted at the range and quality of these stories. Every one of them was interesting, well-written, beautifully crafted and, as a short-story must, every one of them focused my attention on that very curtailed tableau which a short-story necessarily sets before us. – Michael Collins


Fish Anthology 2006 – Grandmother, Girl, Wolf and Other Stories

These stories voice all that is vibrant about the form. – Gerard Donovan. Very short stories pack a poetic punch. Each of these holds its own surprise, or two. Dive into these seemingly small worlds. You’ll come up anew. – Angela Jane Fountas


All the King’s Horses – Anthology of Historical Short Stories

Each of the pieces here has been chosen for its excellence. They are a delightfully varied assortment. More than usual for an anthology, this is a compendium of all the different ways that fiction can succeed. I invite you to turn to ‘All the King’s Horses’. The past is here. Begin.
– Michel Faber


Fish Anthology 2005 – The Mountains of Mars and Other Stories

Literary anthologies, especially of new work, act as a kind of indicator to a society’s concerns. This Short Story collection, such a sharp and useful enterprise, goes beyond that. Its internationality demonstrates how our concerns are held in common across the globe. – Frank Delaney


Fish Anthology 2004 – Spoonface and Other Stories

From the daily routine of a career in ‘Spoonface’, to the powerful, recurring image of a freezer in ‘Shadow Lives’. It was the remarkable focus on the ordinary that made these Fish short stories such a pleasure to read. – Hugo Hamilton


Feathers & Cigarettes

In a world where twenty screens of bullshit seem to be revolving without respite … there is nothing that can surpass the ‘explosion of art’ and its obstinate insistence on making sense of things. These dedicated scribes, as though some secret society, heroically, humbly, are espousing a noble cause.
– Pat McCabe


Franklin’s Grace

It’s supposed to be a short form, the good story, but it has about it a largeness I love. There is something to admire in all these tales, these strange, insistent invention. They take place in a rich and satisfying mixture of places, countries of the mind and heart. – Christopher Hope


Asylum 1928

There are fine stories in this new anthology, some small and intimate, some reaching out through the personal for a wider, more universal perspective, wishing to tell a story – grand, simple, complex or everyday, wishing to engage you the reader. – Kate O’Riodan


Five O’Clock Shadow

I feel like issuing a health warning with this Fish Anthology ­ these stories may seriously damage your outlook – Here the writers view the world in their unique way, and have the imagination, talent, and the courage to refine it into that most surprising of all art forms ­ the short story. – Clem Cairns.


From the Bering Strait

Every story in this book makes its own original way in the world. knowing which are the telling moments, and showing them to us. And as the narrator of the winning story casually remarks, ‘Sometimes its the small things that amaze me’ – Molly McCloskey


Scrap Magic

The stories here possess the difference, the quirkiness and the spark. They follow their own road and their own ideas their own way. It is a valuable quality which makes this collection a varied one. Read it, I hope you say to yourself like I did on many occasions, ‘That’s deadly. How did they think of that?’ – Eamonn Sweeney


Dog Day

Really good short stories like these, don’t read like they were written. They read like they simply grew on the page. – Joseph O’Connor


The Stranger

The writers in this collection can write short stories . . . their quality is the only thing they have in common. – Roddy Doyle


The Fish Garden

This is the first volume of short stories from Ireland’s newest publishing house. We are proud that fish has enabled 15 budding new writers be published in this anthology, and I look forward to seeing many of them in print again.


12 Miles Out – a novel by Nick Wright

12 Miles Out was selected by David Mitchell as the winner of the Fish Unpublished Novel Award.
A love story, thriller and historical novel; funny and sad, uplifting and enlightening.


Altergeist – a novel by Tim Booth

You only know who you can’t trust. You can’t trust the law, because there’s none in New Ireland. You can’t trust the Church, because they think they’re the law. And you can’t trust the State, because they think they’re the Church And most of all, you can’t trust your friends, because you can’t remember who they were anymore.


Small City Blues numbers 1 to 51 – a novel by Martin Kelleher

A memoir of urban life, chronicled through its central character, Mackey. From momentary reflections to stories about his break with childhood and adolescence, the early introduction to the Big World, the discovery of romance and then love, the powerlessness of ordinary people, the weaknesses that end in disappointment and the strengths that help them seek redemption and belonging.


The Woman Who Swallowed the Book of Kells – Collection of Short Stories by Ian Wild

Ian Wild’s stories mix Monty Python with Hammer Horror, and the Beatles with Shakespeare, but his anarchic style and sense of humour remain very much his own in this collection of tall tales from another planet. Where else would you find vengeful organs, the inside story of Eleanor Rigby, mobile moustaches, and Vikings looting a Cork City branch of Abracababra?


News & Articles

Irish Short Story of the Year. VOTE ! (Mia Gallagher, Fish Short Story Prize Judge, has Story Shortlisted)

14th November 2018
Dear family, friends and colleagues   I’m absolutely delighted that my story ‘Polyfilla’ has been shortlisted for the Irish Short Story of the Year with An Post Irish Book Awards.   I’m really gratified to be on such a terrific shortlist, selected from a very strong longlist. My fellow-shortlistees are the wonderful Nuala O’Connor, Róisín O’Donnell, […]

Harry Bauld, Fish Alumni, Publishes Poetry Collection

14th November 2018
The Uncorrected Eye by Harry Bauld Published by Passager Books   A collection of poetry Jo Sarzotti praises for its “roving imagination.”  Read a sample on Passager’s website.   Upcoming Event: Reading at Columbia University November 14, 6 pm Order online   Harry Bauld’s poem, Forty Winters, was published in the Fish Anthology 2017.  Read it […]

Fish Editor Tina Pisco Teaches English in Refugee Camp

1st November 2018
Link: FOLLOW MY BLOG Here are the first three posts on my blog from Nea Kavala Refugee Camp in Greece – Nea Kavala Update #1 It’s Sunday and I have been volunteering in Nea Kavala refugee camp in Northern Greece for one week. I am working in the Women’s Space with Hope, a young woman […]

Fish Anthology 2018 LAUNCH

29th July 2018
WEST CORK LITERARY FESTIVAL, MARITIME HOTEL, JULY  16 It was an unusually dry day for a West Cork summer and the sun shone on the fields across the harbour, and through the wall of glass behind the stage the 100 or so assembled at the Fish Anthology launch could see it all, and the boats […]

Fish Editor Mary-Jane Holmes, Poetry Collection Published

29th July 2018
Heliotrope with Matches and Magnifying Glass by Mary-Jane Holmes (pub 2018 by Pindrop) Mary-Jane Holmes, chief editor with Fish, dazzles with this, her debut collection. These poems range far and wide – from the landscapes, stories and traditions of the North Pennines, rich with dialect; to an Occitan hamlet with its chanterelles and walnut harvests, […]

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