Matthew Sweeney Biography
(1952– ), A Dream of Maps, A Round House, The Lame Waltzer, Blue Shoes, Cacti
Irish poet, born in Donegal, educated at University College, Dublin, the Polytechnic of North London, and Freiburg University. He was Fellow in Creative Writing at the University of East Anglia in 1986. He has also worked as an organizer of events and publicity officer for the Poetry Society. His collections of poetry include A Dream of Maps (1981), A Round House (1983), The Lame Waltzer (1985), Blue Shoes (1989), and Cacti (1992). A laconic but confiding tone permeates much of his writing, which is remarkable for the idiosyncratic wit and economy of its narrative and anecdotal treatments. Many of his poems form imaginatively disquieting fables of the precariousness of existence. A high degree of technical accomplishment underlies the effects of rhyme and rhythm which unobtrusively enrich the textures of his verse. He is also noted for his books of poetry for children, which include The Chinese Dressing Gown (1987).