John Ennis, Irish Poet

The Manuscripts Division is pleased to announce that it has recently acquired the papers of the contemporary Irish poet and editor John Ennis, who is one of the poets included in the Leonard L. Milberg ’53 Irish Poetry Collection. Ennis’s papers include 79 boxes of manuscripts, drafts, corrected typescripts, notes, literary and publishing correspondence, and other materials dating from the 1960s to the present. His papers also include files relating to his editorship of the Poetry Ireland Review (Dublin) and anthologies of Irish Canadian poetry. To date, nineteen volumes of his poetry have been published, beginning with Night on Hibernia (Dublin: The Gallery Press, 1976), which won the Patrick Kavanagh Award. He has also published with Dublin’s Dedalus Press and Book Hub Publishing. From 2002 to 2007, he co-edited three anthologies of Irish and Canadian poetry, and edited a further all-Canadian anthology in 2009. Ennis was at the Waterford Institute of Technology for forty years as Lecturer, Head of the School of Humanities, and Chair of the Centre for Newfoundland and Labrador Studies. At present, Ennis divides his time between Waterford, Canada, and his native County Westmeath, Ireland. Ennis’s correspondence is with fellow poets and authors, editors, publishers, and friends, from the 1960s almost to the present. Among them are Seamus Heaney, John F. Deane, Des Hogan, Dennis O’Driscoll, Brendan Kennelly, Macdara Woods, Neil Jordan, Michael Hartnett, Chris Agee, Noel Monahan, Seán Dunne, Paul Durcan, Frank Ormsby, Padraic Fiacc, Seán Lucy, Francis Stuart, Michael Longley, Peter Fallon (The Gallery Press), David Marcus (New Irish Writing, The Irish Press), James and Janice F. Simmons (The Poets House, Ireland), and others. The Papers of John Ennis (C1563) are described in the finding aid. For information about other Irish literary holdings of the Department of Rare Books and Special Collections, contact

John Ennis’s Draft of “Orpheus”