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Wake Forest
University Press

Wake Forest University Press

Dedicated to Irish Poetry

Wake: Up to Poetry

"The act of poetry is a rebel act."

Poem of the Week: “Hotel” by Medbh McGuckian


I think the detectable difference
between winter and summer is a damsel
who requires saving, a heroine half-
asleep and measurably able to hear
but hard to see, like the spaces
between the birds when I turn
back to the sky for another empty feeling

I would bestow on her a name
with a hundred meanings, all of them
secret, going their own way, as surely
as the silvery mosaic of the previous
week, building itself a sort of hotel
in her voice, to be used whenever
the tale was ruthlessly retold.

And let her learn from the sky, which was
clever and quiet, the rain for its suddenness,
that yes on its own can be a sign for silence,
even from that all-too-inviting mouth.

Medbh McGuckian, from Selected Poems (1997)

Categories: Medbh McGuckian, Poem of the WeekTags: ,


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