An American poet of Irish and Slovenian descent, Dan Murphy teaches creative writing and literature at Boston University. He’s previously taught at Emmanuel College, where he advised the student literary journal, The Saintly Review, and at Suffolk University and Lasell University. From 2019-2020, he served as Writer-in-Residence at Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts, where he taught workshops in poetry and fiction, and invited distinguished writers to read and participate in colloquia.
A past Robert Pinsky Global Fellow and Betsy Leonard Scholar at Boston University, he earned his MFA in Creative Writing in 2015. Poet/critic Dan Chiasson served as his thesis advisor.
During his undergraduate career, he was mentored by poets Cecilia Woloch, Jonathan Fink, Shawn Sturgeon, Jonathan Aaron, and former U.S. Poet Laureate Natasha Trethewey, who selected him as a Grace Abernethy Scholar in Creative Writing at Emory University.
His poems have appeared, or are forthcoming, in several national and international journals including Sugar House Review, Slipstream, The Adirondack Review, Terrain.org, The Summerset Review, TAB Journal, Rust + Moth, and The Dodge. In 2016, his chapbook The Narrow House was shortlisted for the international Fool for Poetry chapbook competition. His first full-length collection, Estate Sale, was named a finalist for the 2022 Barry Spacks Prize in Poetry by Gunpowder Press and is currently under consideration.
Before earning an MFA and his career in teaching, Dan worked as a political strategist and consultant for several electoral campaigns, including for U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren, former congressman Mike Capuano, and Lowell City Councilor Vesna Nuon. He also managed Boston Mayor Michelle Wu’s first campaign for Boston City Council, James Arena-DeRosa’s bid for Lieutenant Governor of Massachusetts, and the successful campaigns of his own (identical twin) brother, former mayor of Lowell, Massachusetts, Patrick Ó. Murphy.
In his teens, Dan was a Golden Gloves boxer and worked summers for his cousins as a mason’s laborer. As an undergraduate, he paid for school working as a carpenter, a trade he learned from his father at a young age. He’s also worked as a mover, bartender, legislative aide, and as a Press Officer with the Irish Department of Foreign Affairs.
His work as a visual artist has been exhibited at the An Beal Bocht gallery in New York and he has recorded on five different albums of traditional Irish music, including with his sister, the fiddler Gráinne Murphy, playing accompaniment on the bodhrán.
Currently, he serves as an editor of Trasna, an online literary quarterly. He’s previously worked as an editorial assistant at AGNI magazine.
He lives and gardens in Massachusetts with his wife, his two daughters, and a black lab mix.