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Wake Forest
University Press

Wake Forest University Press

Dedicated to Irish Poetry

The Yellow Book

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In The Yellow Book, the home-seeking traveler—”a decadent who lived to tell the story”—finds lodgings in our fierce fin de siècle under the roof of his Dublin attic flat. Amid echoes from dead writers, “clouds of unknowing” from his “last Camel,” and ghosts from his own life, the poet muses wisely and wittily on our wound-down decade and expiring double millennium. These twenty-one absorbing, sometimes mordantly funny, and always delightful meditations offer us both the distinctive details of our shared lives and a theoptic view from

windows flung wide on briny balconies
above an ocean of roofs and lighthouse beams;
like a storm lantern the wintry planet swings.
(“Night Thought”)


Reviews

“There is a quality of intellect in this recent work—its varied influences, verbal play and thematic design—that beggars the work of many other writers. The Yellow Book is Mahon’s Autumn Journal, much like MacNeice in its congenial (sometimes jaundiced or wistful) meditations.”
– The Hudson Review

“. . . one of the most impressive poetic sequences to emerge from Ireland in recent years. . . . An extraordinary performance.”
– Robert Taylor, The Boston Globe

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SKU: 978-0-916390-81-5 Categories: ,

Description

In The Yellow Book, the home-seeking traveler—”a decadent who lived to tell the story”—finds lodgings in our fierce fin de siècle under the roof of his Dublin attic flat. Amid echoes from dead writers, “clouds of unknowing” from his “last Camel,” and ghosts from his own life, the poet muses wisely and wittily on our wound-down decade and expiring double millennium. These twenty-one absorbing, sometimes mordantly funny, and always delightful meditations offer us both the distinctive details of our shared lives and a theoptic view from

windows flung wide on briny balconies
above an ocean of roofs and lighthouse beams;
like a storm lantern the wintry planet swings.
(“Night Thought”)


Reviews

“There is a quality of intellect in this recent work—its varied influences, verbal play and thematic design—that beggars the work of many other writers. The Yellow Book is Mahon’s Autumn Journal, much like MacNeice in its congenial (sometimes jaundiced or wistful) meditations.”
– The Hudson Review

“. . . one of the most impressive poetic sequences to emerge from Ireland in recent years. . . . An extraordinary performance.”
– Robert Taylor, The Boston Globe

Additional information

Publication date:

1998

Binding:

,