Michael S. Begnal was born in 1966 in the U.S.A., grew up in central Pennsylvania, and more recently has spent nine years in Ireland. He was editor of the Irish literary magazine The Burning Bush.

His work has appeared in Poetry Ireland Review, Poetry Wales, Translation Ireland, BlazeVOX, The Blue Canary, Shearsman, Natural Bridge, Vallum, and many other journals. He is also included in anthologies such as Breaking the Skin: New Irish Poetry (Black Mountain Press), and Six Gallery Press's Jacob's Ladder. His Irish-language (Gaelic) writing appears in the Go Nuige Seo anthologies (Coisceim), and elsewhere.

Begnal's collection The Lakes of Coma was brought out by Six Gallery Press in 2003. Another collection, Ancestor Worship, is published (2005) by Irish press Salmon Poetry. Six Gallery Press has also released his booklet, Mercury, the Dime.