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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: “The Trees” by Michael Longley

In honor of Michael Longley’s receipt of the 2015 International Griffin Poetry Prize yesterday, we bring you one of the poems he read in Toronto at the awards presentation. Many congratulations to Mr. Longley for this achievement!

The Trees

I dreamed we were cutting down the trees
Of childhood: at the back of our garden
The grey ash from which we dropped into
The playing fields, two flowering currants’
Summer hum, the cherry tree that after
Many barren years produced five pears,
The sickly apple tree, the beautiful
Poisonous laburnum, and the cypress
That was impossible to climb. Peter,
If you hide in there, I’ll never find you.

Michael LongleyThe Stairwell (2014)

Watch Longley read at Koerner Hall in Toronto, Canada during the Griffin Poetry Prize shortlist readings on June 3, 2015. Jump to 31:00 in the video to go straight to his introduction and reading: 2015 Griffin Poetry Prize Shortlist Readings


Categories: Irish Poetry, Michael Longley, Poem of the Week, Poetry

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