0 items - $0.00
Wake Forest
University Press

Wake Forest University Press

Dedicated to Irish Poetry

The Radio

$13.95

In The Radio, Leontia Flynn exercises her signature wit, formal inventiveness, bitter irony, and unique blend of vernacular speech and literary allusion. In the title poem, the radio is a portal from the outside world, piping “explosive news” of the Northern Irish Troubles into the poet’s childhood home, her mother constantly turning to “field the blow” from her children’s ears. The first two sections—“The Child, the Family . . .” followed by “. . . And the Outside World”—are titled after the classic book on child development by D.W. Winnicott. Within this framework, the poet relentlessly tests the boundaries of home and family life through sequences detailing the care of her infant child to the aftermath of her father’s death, and remembrances of poets such as Seamus Heaney, old loves and friends, and the heightened moments of the past. The final section contains three dialogues: a low-flying strafe across the fields of gender politics; a climate change debate between a defender of the industrial abuse of nature for the good of man and the responding voice of nature itself; and a satire writ between a weary mother of grown children and the Awesome Voice of the Internet.

This is a volume about transmissions that sometimes assault us and sometimes help us escape, signals breaking through from outside in, from past to present, from parents to children. As the “glazed God’s-eye / of the transmitter” keeps watch over home, the city, and the “fanciful list” of people who inhabit these spaces, we are made aware, and made wary, of the intrusion of technology into the mind of the poet. These formally inventive and superbly controlled poems balance Flynn’s trenchant observations with a deeply sympathetic understanding of her subject.

Winner of the Irish Times Poetry Now Award, shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot Prize


Praise for Leontia Flynn

“Anybody with an interest in poetry should be reading Leontia Flynn. Those with no interest should be reading her too: she has what it takes to overcome resistance. … Her understanding of what it is to be a woman is one of the things (by no means the only thing) that makes this collection so powerful. Her thinking is complicated but never arrogantly inaccessible. I was bowled over by this, her fourth collection. I kept returning to poems for the sheer pleasure of them — no slog involved.”
– Kate Kellaway, The Guardian

“Her latest collection is a triumph of poetic innovation that signals Flynn’s capacity to listen amidst the din of contemporary life and record its low, lyric thrum. In The Radio, she gives shape to the ‘music of words’ that reverberates within our quotidian existence, channeling it internally and then broadcasting it back to the outside world in original and unexpected forms.”
– Dawn Sherratt-Bado, Dublin Review of Books

“In The Radio, Flynn wears her erudition lightly and this moving reflection on mothers, history and mortality never takes itself seriously for too long.”
– John Field, T.S. Eliot Prize review

SKU: 978-1-930630-84-0 Categories: , , ,

Description

In The Radio, Leontia Flynn exercises her signature wit, formal inventiveness, bitter irony, and unique blend of vernacular speech and literary allusion. In the title poem, the radio is a portal from the outside world, piping “explosive news” of the Northern Irish Troubles into the poet’s childhood home, her mother constantly turning to “field the blow” from her children’s ears. The first two sections—“The Child, the Family . . .” followed by “. . . And the Outside World”—are titled after the classic book on child development by D.W. Winnicott. Within this framework, the poet relentlessly tests the boundaries of home and family life through sequences detailing the care of her infant child to the aftermath of her father’s death, and remembrances of poets such as Seamus Heaney, old loves and friends, and the heightened moments of the past. The final section contains three dialogues: a low-flying strafe across the fields of gender politics; a climate change debate between a defender of the industrial abuse of nature for the good of man and the responding voice of nature itself; and a satire writ between a weary mother of grown children and the Awesome Voice of the Internet.

This is a volume about transmissions that sometimes assault us and sometimes help us escape, signals breaking through from outside in, from past to present, from parents to children. As the “glazed God’s-eye / of the transmitter” keeps watch over home, the city, and the “fanciful list” of people who inhabit these spaces, we are made aware, and made wary, of the intrusion of technology into the mind of the poet. These formally inventive and superbly controlled poems balance Flynn’s trenchant observations with a deeply sympathetic understanding of her subject.

Winner of the Irish Times Poetry Now Award, shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot Prize


Praise for Leontia Flynn

“Anybody with an interest in poetry should be reading Leontia Flynn. Those with no interest should be reading her too: she has what it takes to overcome resistance. … Her understanding of what it is to be a woman is one of the things (by no means the only thing) that makes this collection so powerful. Her thinking is complicated but never arrogantly inaccessible. I was bowled over by this, her fourth collection. I kept returning to poems for the sheer pleasure of them — no slog involved.”
– Kate Kellaway, The Guardian

“Her latest collection is a triumph of poetic innovation that signals Flynn’s capacity to listen amidst the din of contemporary life and record its low, lyric thrum. In The Radio, she gives shape to the ‘music of words’ that reverberates within our quotidian existence, channeling it internally and then broadcasting it back to the outside world in original and unexpected forms.”
– Dawn Sherratt-Bado, Dublin Review of Books

“In The Radio, Flynn wears her erudition lightly and this moving reflection on mothers, history and mortality never takes itself seriously for too long.”
– John Field, T.S. Eliot Prize review

Additional information

Publication Date:

Pages:

Binding: