Due to the exchange being limited in 2021 to the online realms, Ó Bhéal and Here Comes Everyone decided to instead publish an anthology to celebrate all the poets involved in the exchange so far.

Ó Bhéal in association with Cork City Council, Coventry City Council
and Here Comes Everyone

presents a Cork-Coventry Twin Cities Celebration with the launch of a new anthology

Twin Skies – poems from Cork and Coventry


You can view the free digital version at this link.

Twin Skies celebrates 14 years of poetry interplay between the cities of Cork and Coventry. The 40 poets whose work appears here have each visited their respective twin city on at least one occasion to share their well-crafted words and experiences. Poets included in the anthology will read across two online events, at Ó Bhéal on the 9th August and at Fire & Dust in Coventry on the 19th of August.

The anthology is published on the occasion of Coventry’s designation as UK City of Culture 2021. Cork was designated as City of Culture in 2005, a cultural touchstone from which Ó Bhéal eventually emerged as an institution dedicated to the promotion and well-being of poetry and poets, an entity well-matched by its experienced Coventry counterparts.

Almost every year since 2008, two or three poets have travelled in each direction, with each visit including two or more readings at independent events, visits to Lord Mayors’ chambers as well as to cultural and cherished locations. 2020 was the first year in which the exchange had to be confined within the realms of the virtual, with online readings and zoom visits. Whilst not an ideal scenario, the spirit of the exchange was able to continue. As 2021 ultimately presented the same limitations, we decided to take advantage of the opportunity to create an anthology, which would in turn act as catalyst for reuniting the poets involved to date – by way of two collective readings at our respective online events. The book will soon be available (free) in eBook format, at the Ó Bhéal website.

Since 2009 Ó Bhéal has co-facilitated this exchange hand in hand with an impressive succession of invested partners in Coventry (which along with Stalingrad was the world’s first twin city – and Cork’s first twin). These selfless cultural ambassadors include: John Morley of Heaventree Press (& Night Blue Fruit); Antony Owen; Adam Steiner of Silhouette Press; and Raef Boylan, editor of Here Comes Everyone and event organiser of Fire & Dust.

Acknowledgment is due to the city councils of Cork and Coventry for their ongoing support, as we continue to drive and develop our invaluable relationship for its benefits to poets and writing communities from both cities. Since 2008, the exchanges have been documented across a series of collective reviews by the participating poets, which can be viewed on the Ó Bhéal website at www.obheal.ie.

The Ó Bhéal launch can be viewed here: