Publications & reviews


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The Loneliness of the Sasquatch, a transcreation from the Irish of Gabriel Rosenstock, forthcoming November 2018. Launching 22 November in The Teachers Club at 6.30.

“An exceptional book.”–Doireann Ní Ghríofa

“An unusual project has resulted in a very accomplished book.”–Paddy Bushe

First the Feathers, debut poetry collection, Doire Press, November 2017 (shortlisted for the Shine Strong Award for best first collection)

‘This strikingly beautiful début reverberates with the insight that comes from close observation of inner and outer worlds. The collection is distinguished by the sensuous physicality of vivid natural imagery, rich variety in form and an illuminating and musical use of language; all of which is backlit by a questioning intelligence. Bell faces the shadows cast by loss and change without flinching and thereby honours what it is to be alive.’ –Jane Clarke

‘In First the Feathers, Amanda Bell has crafted an engaging debut collection. There is a keen intelligence at work here in poems that are imaginative in their response to the intricate politics of being alive. Questioning, thought-provoking – these poems are energetic in their urge to interpret and ultimately celebrate human experience. This is poetry to be admired and returned to, pulled from the shelf of favourites.’ – Enda Wyley

“Bell’s method of setting her work apart involves an ambitious formal approach, and she makes skilful use of haibun, ballad, villanelle, ghazal, and sestina.’ – Jessica Traynor, Poetry Ireland Review.124 (full review)

“Amanda Bell has published widely, distinguishing herself in the composition of haiku, as well as other forms.” – Fred Johnston, Books Ireland, March-April 2018


The Lost Library Book, The Onslaught Press, Spring 2017

My children’s book, illustrated by Alice Durand-Wietzel and published by The Onslaught Press, was launched in Marsh’s Library on 20 May 2017. It is available from the publisher, in The Chester Beatty Library Bookshop, Books@One in Louisburgh, and in Marsh’s Library itself. It is distributed by Gardners and Bertrams, so can be ordered through any bookseller.


‘Wonderfully written and beautifully illustrated, this tale will create real book lovers! To be read and wondered over again and again.’ Mary Esther Judy, Inis Reading Guide

‘A must for any reader who appreciates the magic that can only be found in libraries and between the pages of old books.’ Becky Long, Inis Magazine, July 2017

‘It is a great story that children, and their parents, will delight in reading, and its happy ending is, indeed, the stuff of fairytales.’ Sara Keating, The Irish Times, 15 April 2017

‘The remarkable true story of a forgotten library book that was returned to Marsh’s Library after 100 years. Written with elegance and grace, it’s a fascinating tale for book lovers young and old.’ – Sarah Webb, Award-winning writer, and Children’s Curator of the Mountains to the Sea Book Festival


Undercurrents, Alba Publishing, June 2016

(Awarded second prize in the Haiku Society of America’s Kanterman Merit Book Award, and shortlisted for the Haiku Foundation’s Touchstone Distinguished Books Award) 

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Undercurrents is a book of wonder and intrigue, both in its capturing of these watery landscapes, its respect for the intertwined ecosystem and its delivery of the interrelated human story.’ E.A. Gleeson, Plumwood Mountain: An Australian Journal of Ecopoetry and Ecopoetics.

‘I can offer no higher praise of Bell’s prose than that at its best it looks and sounds positively Sebaldian, in its slightly melancholic tone and style and in its conflation of the past with the present […] Undercurrents, with its carefully sequenced thematic unity, more than adequately illustrates her considerable talent.’ Matthew Paul, Presence 56, October 2016

Undercurrents contains beautifully crafted work that arouses the senses and triggers a variety of emotions. Its various themes of history, geography, personal history and nature work in perfect harmony. The poems continue to resonate after repeated readings and the book is a worthwhile addition to our haibun                                      collections.’ –Patricia Prime in Haibun Today (for full review see here)

Undercurrents was with me all summer and I read it front to back several times. I imagine I’ll read it again, as I think Bell has something to teach us about the relationship between the prose and the haiku in haibun. …. And when it comes to that occasionally elusive so-called link-and-shift, there’s rarely a wrong note. This is a collection that bears rereading and study.’ —Bob Lucky, Contemporary Haibun Online 12.3, October 2016 

Undercurrents is an interesting and rewarding little book, not least for the way it indicates something of a shift in the dynamic of Irish verse as our poetry of place moves away from the pieties of the last century and towards a more exploratory, indeterminate mode.’ Billy Mills, Elliptical Movements (for full review see here)

‘Bell is an endlessly inventive poet, and her prose is as distinguished as her haiku poetry. The prose combines lucid information and passages of memoir; the mesh is fascinating and often touching … [her]art of haibun is exemplary and her book game changing.’ –Tom d’Evelyn, The Poem Between Blog (for full review see here)

‘A book that courses gently as the rivers it describes, startling us at times with various historical snippets from the pages and footnotes of history: Domenico Garibaldi, an Italian organ grinder – murdered, poor fellow! This is a compelling and unusual narrative, arresting us with its tenderness. You will find haiku in this book that could grace any anthology, national or international. Teeming with life and shot through with death, Undercurrents is a very welcome addition to haikai literature.’   —Gabriel Rosenstock
‘Undercurrents celebrates a plethora of connections between nature and humans and as such can be described as deeply ecological literature. Every page of these exquisite haiku and haibun enchants.’ —Maeve O’Sullivan, haiku poet and founding member of Haiku Ireland
‘Haibun in Ireland is in good hands’  —Mike Montreuil, haibun editor, A Hundred Gourds
‘Prose and poetry play off each other delightfully here. The aptness with which they are combined is deeply satisfying to both fact and felt imagination.’  —James Norton, haiku poet and founder editor of Haiku Spirit

To order Undercurrents using Paypal:

Undercurrents – Irish orders

 Undercurrents – orders outside Ireland


9781910185247The Lion Tamer Dreams of Office Work: An Anthology of Poetry by the Hibernian Writers, edited and with a Foreword by Amanda Bell. Alba Publishing, October 2015

‘Amanda Bell has done wonders in this anthology, picking up all the themes and voices of the Hibernian well-lit room of imagination.’

–Thomas McCarthy, poet



Maurice Craig: Photographs, ed. Amanda Bell, Lilliput Press, 2011


Creative Non-fiction

Numéro Cinq featured my childhood memoir ‘Bad Weather Days‘ in the March 2017 edition

Trout’, The Clearing, February 2015

Book Chapter

‘Transcending the Urban: The Queen of Sheba’ in Kathleen Jamie: Essays and Poems on her Writing, ed. Rachel Falconer. Edinburgh University Press. 2014


‘Seedlings’ and ‘Urban Foraging’ forthcoming in Gorse 9

‘Mount Jerome’ forthcoming in Crannóg

‘Moon’ and ‘The New Road’ forthcoming in Banshee 5

‘Why Ajo Blanco?’ accepted by The Curlew

‘Cochlea’ in the Spring issue of Skylight 47

‘Ghazal of Exodus’ accepted by The Stinging Fly

‘A Small Attendance’, The Incubator, April 2017

‘Complicit’, Poetry Ireland Review 120, December 2016

‘Bumblebees’, Cyphers 82, December 2016

‘The Ballad of Mary Anne Cadden’, The Village, Issue 49, October 2016

‘Hero’, Skylight 47, Autumn 2016

‘Winter Sun’, Crannóg, June 2016

‘Mad Jack’, The Ofi Press 47, Spring 2016

‘Buttercups’, The Ofi Press 47, Spring 2016

‘Sindhura, Andalusia,’ Southword 2016

‘Invasion’, Skylight 47, Spring 2016

‘Otto Weidt’s Workshop for the Blind’, The Stony Thursday Book, October 2015

‘Tuam’,  The Burning Bush 2.8, Summer 2015

‘Pipistrelles’, Crannóg 39 (Summer 2015)

‘Winter Citrus’, Skylight 47, Issue 5, May 2015

‘Leonard Cohen in the O2’, ‘Fathers and What Must be Said’ Anthology, Rebel Poetry, 2014

‘Burren Vulture’, The Clearing online, September 2014 (Little Toller Books)

‘Troglodytes’, The Clearing online, September 2014 (Little Toller Books)

‘Mortuary Virgin’, Skylight 47, September 2014

‘Mulcair’, The Stinging Fly 22

‘Dark Days’, The Burning Bush 2 (6)

‘Cockle Picking’, Crannóg 35

‘The Beauty of the Game’, The Ofi Press 33

‘Solstice’, The Ofi Press 35


‘Striking Out’, HaibunToday, September 2017

‘So Long’, Contemporary Haibun Online (CHO) December 2016

‘Mountain Sheep’, Haibun Today (see here)

Extracts from Undercurrents in The Clearing online (see here)

‘Casings’, A Hundred Gourds, May 2016 (see here)

‘Pointillisme’, Blithe Spirit, May 2016

‘The Little Dargle’, Haibun Today, March 2016 (see here)

 ‘The Swan’, cattails, January 2016

‘The Return’, Haibun Today 9.4, December 2015 (see here)

‘Dodder River’, Blithe Spirit 25.2

‘Between the Bridges’, forthcoming in Presence 53/54

‘The River Glore’, cattails, September 2015

‘Largan Stream’, cattails, September 2015

‘The Spaddagh River’, cattails, May 2015

‘Swiftly Flowing Water’, Haibun Today 9.2 (see here)

‘Sound Wall’, A Hundred Gourds 4.4, September 2015 (see here)


‘across the square’, forthcoming Blithe Spirit February 2017

‘the end fruit’, forthcoming Blithe Spirit February 2017

‘a blackbird’, forthcoming Blithe Spirit February 2017

‘outdoor sun salutes’, Presence 56

‘a dead jackdaw hangs’ Presence 56

‘his fiancée’, Blithe Spirit, August 2016

‘in dented grass’, Blithe Spirit, August 2016

‘discarded’, Blithe Spirit, August 2016

‘garden swing’, Blithe Spirit, May 2016

‘river walk’, cattails, May 2016

‘fledgelings gone’, Wildflower anthology (Caroline Skanne) 2016

‘my old cat’, Wildflower anthology (Caroline Skanne) 2016

‘cold blue sky’, AHG, June 2016

‘silvering’, Blithe Spirit 26.1

‘dawn mist’ haiga, One Hundred Gourds, March 2016

‘winter morning’, cattails January 2016

‘temperature rising’,  Sonic Book, December 2015

‘between cool waves’  Sonic Book, December 2015

‘limeseeds’, Blithe Spirit 25.4

‘paracetamol’, Blithe Spirit 25.4

‘another birthday’, Blithe Spirit 25.4

‘seashore foraging’,  A Hundred Gourds, December 2015

‘long-term carpark’,  A Hundred Gourds, December 2015

‘hiding in the vine’, Shamrock 32, October 2015

‘cloud shadows scudding’, Shamrock 32, October 2015

‘white haze’, Shamrock 32, October 2015

‘darting bird’s foot’, Shamrock 32, October 2015

‘Nollaig na mBan’, Shamrock 32, October 2015

‘tongues flapping’, cattails, September 2015

‘lakeshore walk’, cattails, September 2015

‘midsummer’, cattails, September 2015

‘keepbox at low tide’, A Hundred Gourds 4.4, September 2015

‘her barbed remarks’, forthcoming Presence 53

‘dawn departure’ forthcoming Presence 53

‘attracting wasps’ forthcoming Presence 53

‘not yet midsummer’, Blithe Spirit 25.3, August 2015

‘nesting time’, Blithe Spirit 25.2

‘Grand Canal’, Blithe Spirit 25.2

‘green tea’, Blithe Spirit 25.2

‘stone tongue’, Presence 52, June 2015

‘editing my prose’, cattails, May 2015 (editor’s choice)

‘loosened’, cattails, May 2015

‘the midnight path’, Shamrock Haiku Journal, February 2015

‘the tang of flowering currant’, cattails, January 2015


‘The Evolution of the Scots Language in Kathleen Jamie’s Poetry’, First World Congress of Scottish Literatures, University of Glasgow, 2-5 July 2014

‘Transcending the Urban: Kathleen Jamie’s The Queen of Sheba’, French Society for Scottish Studies Conference: Scotland and the (post)human’, Besançon, October 2013

‘Biocentrism in Theodore Roethke’s Greenhouse Poems’, ASLE UKI Conference: Composting Culture. University of Worcester, September 2012

‘An Inadvertent Romantic: Alice Oswald’s Dart’, DCU Postgraduate Conference March 2012

‘Appropriating the Language of Faith: Calvinism as Cultural Construct in the Poetry of Kathleen Jamie’ in POST: A Review of Poetry Studies IV : Poetry as Process

Book Reviews


Peadar O’Donoghue’s Jewel; Sarah Clancy’s Thanks for Nothing, Hippies; Colm Keegan’s Don’t Go There; and Ross Hattaway’s Pretending to be Dead

Green Letters

The Irish Poet and the Natural World: An Anthology of Verse in English from the Tudors to the Romantics, ed. Andrew Carpenter and Lucy Collins.


Hopscotch in the Sky, by Lucinda Jacob, Little Island and Poetry Ireland, 2017

Mafiosa by Catherine Doyle, Chicken House, 2017

The Rise of Wolves, by Kerr Thomson, Chickenhouse, 2017

Optimists Die First by Susin Nielsen, Andersen Press, 2017

Countless, by Karen Gregory, Bloomsbury Books, 2017

Margot and Me, by Juno Dawson, Hot Key Books, 2017

What is Poetry, by Michael Rosen, Walker Books, 2016

The Fire Horse, by Vladimir Mayakovsky, Osip Mandelstam and Daniil Kharms, The New York Review Children’s Collection, 2017

Perfect by Nicola Davies, Graffeg, 2016

We Come Apart by Sarah Crossan and Brian Monaghan, Bloomsbury, 2016

White Lies, Black Dare, by Joanna Nadin, Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 2016

House of the Bees by Lindsay Eagar, Candlewick Press, 2016

The Best Medicine by Christine Hamill, Little Island, 2016

The Story of a Seagull and the Cat who Taught her to Fly, by Luis Sepulveda, Alma Books Ltd, 2016

A Seven Letter Word, by Kim Slater, MacMillan Children’s Books, 2016

My Book of Stories by Deborah Patterson, British Library, 2016

Inferno, by Catherine Doyle, Chicken House, 2016

Because You’ll Never Meet Me by Leah Thomas, Bloomsbury, 2015

We Are All Made of Molecules, by Susin Nielsen, Andersen Press, 2015

Bronze and Sunflower, by Cao Wenxuan, Walker Books, 2015

The Rest of Us Just Live Here, by Patrick Ness, Walker Books, 2015

The Whale That Fell in Love with a Submarine, by Akiyuki Nosaka, Pushkin Children’s Books, 2015

Come Into This Poem by Tony Mitton, Janetta Otter Barry Books, 2011

A is Amazing, Wendy Cooling ed., Janetta Otter Barry Books

Does Your Face Fit? Poems About Fitting In and Standing Out, compiled by Roger Stevens, A&C Black 2011

What Are We Fighting For? New Poems About War by Brian Moses and Roger Stevens, Macmillan Children’s Books, 2014

Stars in Jars: New and Collected Poems by Chrissie Gittens, Bloomsbury Children’s Books, 2014

Let’s Play, Debjani Chatterjee and Brian d’Arcy eds, Francis Lincoln Children’s Books

Leopold Blue by Rosie Rowell, Hot Key Books 2014

Bombmaker by Claire McFall, Templar, 2014

Seeds of Liberty by Claire Hennessy, Poolbeg, 2014

We Are All Made of Molecules, by Susin Nielsen

Vendetta by Catherine Doyle

The Moonshine Dragon, by Cornelia Funke

Children are Naughty, by Vincent Cuvellier

The Fish in the Bathtub, by Eoin Colfer

Chicken Clicking by Jeanne Willis

Vango: Between Sky and Earth by Timothée de Fombelle

Stormclouds by Brian Gallagher

Across the Divide by Brian Gallagher

Infamous by Sherrilyn Kenyon

Penny Dreadful by Joanna Nadin

Prometheus Unplugged by Alan Murphy

Partners in Crime by Nigel Hinton