Colm Breathnach was born in Cork in 1961.
He has published seven collections of poetry in Irish: Cantaic an Bhalbháin (Dublin, Coiscéim, 1991), An Fearann Breac (Coiscéim, 1992), Scáthach (Coiscéim, 1994), Croí agus Carraig (Coiscéim, 1995), An Fear Marbh (Indreabhán, Cló Iar-Chonnachta, 1998), Chiaroscuro (Coiscéim, 2006), ‘Dánta’ agus dánta eile (Coiscéim, 2012) and a selected edition, Rogha Dánta 1991 – 2006 (Coiscéim, 2008).
His first novel, Con Trick ‘An Bhalla Bháin’ (Coiscéim 2009), presents a metafictional re-evaluation of the relationship between author and reader. With Dr. Andrea Nic Thaidhg, he produced Cat agus Luch (Coiscéim, 2000), a translation of the Günter Grass novel Katz und Maus.
He has won the principle poetry prize in the annual Conradh na Gaeilge Oireachtas Literary Competitions four times, and in 1999 the Irish-American Cultural Institute presented him with the Butler Award for his work in poetry. He was the first Irish language editor of the series Best of Irish Poetry/Scoth na hÉigse (Cork, SouthWord Editions, The Munster Literature Centre, 2006, Eds Colm Breathnach and Maurice Riordan).
Breathnach has had poems translated into English, Scottish Gaelic, German, Italian, Chinese and Slovenian, and his collection An Fear Marbh was published in a Rumanian edition (Bărbatul fără viaţă, Iasi, Ars Longa, 1999). As well as Ireland, he has read at literary festivals in Scotland, Germany, Italy, the USA, China and Slovenia. He was granted writer’s residencies in Shanghai (2011) and in Slovenia (2012).
He lives in Leixlip, County Kildare.