Michael Longley wins £34,000 Griffin international prize
Michael Longley has won Canada’s Griffin international prize, said to be the world’s largest prize for a first edition single collection of poetry written in or translated into English. Belfast-born Longley took the prize with his tenth collection, The Stairwell, which was also shortlisted for this year’s TS Eliot prize. Longley and Canadian winner Jane Munro each received C$65,000 (£34,000). In his acceptance speech Longley, aged 75, said he had been writing since he was 15. “It’s my life. It’s my religion. It’s the way I make sense of the world,” he said. The jury described The Stairwell, which includes a sequence of elegies for Longley’s twin brother, as “a book by a major poet writing at the height of his powers”.