In The Library Of Lost Objects

A Stone
The Beekeeper to his Assistant
The Rings
Baltic Amber
The Book Collector


All poems taken from the collection In The Library of Lost Objects, which was published in June, 2011, by Ward Wood Publishing.

In The Library Of Lost Objects was shortlisted for the Strong Award for best debut collection in 2011 by an Irish poet.

In The Library of Lost Objects was also shortlisted for the Patrick Kavanagh Poetry Prize, 2010, for best unpublished debut collection by an Irish author, receiving a special commendation from judge Brian Lynch.



“In this collection, the poet’s scientific background is brought to bear on his poetry as interesting connections are made in a universe where the legacies of the past pervade the present… Nature is present in many guises: awe- inspiring, hideous, watchful and yet, at the same time, non-seeing… This collection isn’t only about lost objects, but also about lost feelings and human frailty in the face of constant change.”

- Poetry Book Society: Summer Bulletin ’11


“Duffy is absolutely aware of the ways in which reader and poet meet and meld in the white spaces between words. He’s entirely respectful of that relationship; he doesn’t take us for granted, provoke or offend, or leave us lost and wandering aimlessly through his lines. Duffy understands poetry, it’s his tradition; he obviously loves it and has a curatorial urge to see it thrive. He exhibits only the good stuff, the best work, there’s no small talk, no gimmicks, nothing insincere, he just gets down to the heart of things and gives us poems that matter.”

– Grace Wells, Poetry Ireland Review (autumn 2011)


“A striking feature is the author’s fascination with (and enthusiasm for) the sciences, formal and natural, embracing mathematics, physics, geology, astronomy, and the examination of flowers, birds and insects. Having studied physics himself, Duffy is well-placed to use scientific argot, and he doesn’t shy away from mining such rich and rare vocabularies to good effect, following in the illustrious footsteps of other scientist-poets: immunologist Miroslav Holub; biochemist Jean Bleakney; polymath Mario Petrucci and fellow physicist Iggy McGovern.”

- Maeve O’Sullivan, Orbis: autumn 2011


“Noel Duffy’s choice of title for his debut collection is a good early omen. It neatly and precisely draws together the books deepest concerns… ‘Baltic Amber’ does the kind of stitch-work that most books only dream of having. So many threads find a common ground here… the preserved ant an ideal symbol of poetry’s work of consecration, restoration and survival… Duffy’s work is rooted in a deep study of his medium and the poems in In The Library of Lost Objects work in concert in a way very few books achieve.”

- Dave Coates, Magma 51: winter 2011 (Read full review here)



An interview and reading from Noel can be found at ‘Voices From Ireland Series’. You can hear them here

Noel’s poem ‘Rock Ammonite’ features on the University of Liverpool’s Centre for Poetry & Science website. You’ll also find a short article by Noel on the relationship between poetry and science in his work. It can be found here

Noel’s article on ‘The Poetry of Science’ appeared in Poetry Ireland News ahead of the ‘Science Meets Poetry’ event at the Euroscience Open Forum (ESOF), the largest science conference in Europe, which was held in Dublin from 11th-15th July, 2012. You can find it here

There is an interview with Noel by poet, fellow-physics graduate and blogger Kate Dempsey about the writing process, the role of science in his poetry and the sometimes fraught process of trying to get published. He also talks to Kate about working towards completing his second collection. You can find it here



In The Library of Lost Objects can be ordered from Amazon and The Book Depository

The Kindle edition can be ordered from Amazon.


Comments are closed.