Phil Lynch has had poems published in a range of print and online literary journals and anthologies including: Even The Daybreak (35 Years of Salmon Poetry), The Lea-Green Down (an anthology of poems inspired by the poetry of Patrick Kavanagh), Live Encounters Poetry (online), Revival Literary Journal, OFi Press Mexico, Flare, Bare Hands Poetry (online) and Bare Hands Anthology(print), Circle Time, Bray Arts Journal, The Poetry Bus, Wordlegs, Boyne Berries, Headstuff, Silver Apples Magazine, Census 3, and Headspace. He has also had poems included in a number of CD compilations.

 One of his poems was highly commended in the 2019 Ballyroan Library Poetry Competition. He was runner-up in the 2014 iYeats Poetry Competition and has been shortlisted in a number of competitions (Doolin Writers' Poetry Competition (3rd place), the Red Line Poetry Competition) and longlisted in others (the Dermot Healy International Poetry Competition and the Over The Edge New Writer of the Year Competition). In 2018 he was the winner of the Intercompetitive Poetry Competition, a performance event of several rounds in which competitors to progress to the next stage were selected by means of a secret audience ballot on each occasion.

 His work has also been featured on national and local radio in Ireland including on programmes such as the Arena Arts Show, The Poetry Programme, Sunday Miscellany and The Documentary on One on RTE Radio 1.

 His poetry collection, In a Changing Light, (Salmon Poetry), was published in 2016.

 Phil is a regular performer at poetry/spoken word events and festivals in Ireland (festivals include: Electric Picnic Festival, Bray Literary Festival, Cuirt International Literary Festival (Spoken Word Platform), Dublin Book Festival, St. Patrick’s Festival Poetry Trail, Ennistymon Book Festival, Red Line Book Festival, First Fortnight Festival). He has also performed at events in London, Brussels, Paris, New York and Washington DC.

 He has participated in a collaborative project (with multi-media artist Hilary Williams) which resulted in the production of a poem-film as part of the Hinterland 2019 exhibition under the auspices of the artist’s network ArtNetDLR.

 Phil was a co-founder of LINGO, the first international spoken word festival in Ireland.

 Link to video of Encounters (the text of which is also attached)

 Balcony TV video: If St. Patrick could see us now:

In a Changing Light: live performance:
Link to CD track on Spotify: My Wife Thinks I’m at a Poetry Reading Lynch has been writing poetry for many years.


Changing Light

 It was nearly dark

when he came in from the fields

tired from the toils of the day

ready to complain

about the Tilley lamp still unlit,

would he have to light it himself

he asked of no one in particular.

In the shadow of an empty space

beneath the stairs

I stood primed.


The men with the metal boots,

their belts heavy as a gunslinger’s,

had spent what seemed like years

digging holes to plant the creosote forest

that stretched across the countryside,

with giant spools of wire unfurled

along roads and lanes and fields.

I marvelled at how they scaled

the heights of those black poles

and worked at right angles to the ground

without falling,

stuntmen all.


In the countdown to dusk I waited

finger on the switch

as if to take its pulse

or like some general in the Kremlin

with his thumb on the red button

waiting for the order to push.

The pre-determined signal came

from my mother at the table

and with all the strength 

in my bony digit

I flicked the magic switch.


Outside, the dusk turned instantly to dark.

Inside, the light would never be the same.


©Phil Lynch



I might have met you once while on the road

but how was I to know you would be there?

No map to guide, no picture to compare,

so why would I have stopped or even slowed?

And yet if you had signalled me your code,

I would have shyly shuffled, unaware

that you and I could have so much to share;

I’d still to learn what nature had bestowed.

But later when we met I knew you well

although I least expected you to be

so blissful, yet so able to confound.

Instead of catching me when first I fell,

you put me in a boat that’s still at sea

in search of shores which never may be found.


©Phil Lynch





Smoke without Fire

The doctor and the dentist

greet the scientist

they drink a toast to olden days

in their glasses

reflections of their student years


No cheering crowds hail the worker

as he makes his way

through narrow streets

to meet his learned friends;

they raise another glass,

another past embraced.


The conversation takes them back

to dingy bars and dodgy

all-night party places,

to great debates on questions

scarcely understood;

the more they learned

the more they seemed to lose

but no one kept a balance sheet.


They talk of when they plotted

for the glory days to come

how everything would be different

after the revolution

how it would be for real this time

there would be a call to arms

a conscription of words

an awakening.


The voices of rebels would be heard

over those of primates and presidents

the poets and the protest singers

would write the new anthems

everything would be different.


No one saw the future creep up

becoming part of the past

they meant to change.


Now, in their pursuing way,

it is those glorious days

which raise the cheers

when comrades gather

to commemorate.

 ©Phil Lynch