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Michael Longley

Michael Longley

…at’s saying something!” *Author photo by Niall Hartnett Praise for Michael Longley “Longley’s poems count the phenomena of the natural world with the particular deliberate pleasure of a lover’s fingers wandering along the bumpy path of the vertebrae.” – Seamus Heaney “While greatly attached to certain classical rules, Longley has always paid homage to them so interestingly, simultaneously mastering and subverting them.” – International Griffin Poe…

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Music as Muse: The Importance of Jazz for Michael Longley

Music as Muse: The Importance of Jazz for Michael Longley

…end on rhythm to thrive. He says, “Rhythm is a poem’s heartbeat. If the rhythm fails, then the poem dies of heart failure.” If rhythm is responsible for creating life, it’s no wonder that Longley imagines the throne of God as a as a “vast rainbow-organ.” Longley writes, “As we approach and God turns to face us, we’ll see … Fats Waller.”…

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Collected Poems | Michael Longley

Collected Poems | Michael Longley

…e and tenderness, domestic calm and pastoral counterpoise also stand among Longley’s signature subjects. . . . Longley’s genius is pastoral and commemorative.” – Publisher’s Weekly (starred review) “I can’t think of a living poet who writes such incredible sonnets. . . . He travels with ease from the Iliad to his local fields. . . . It’s hard to tell if he’s a poet of regular life who is good at stumbling upon depth, or a deep poet who knows that…

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Michael Longley Wins Feltrinelli International Poetry Prize

…l implications, as well as the very high stylistic quality of his oeuvre.” Longley will be presented with the prize at a ceremony in November 2022. “Longley is an extraordinary poet of landscape, particularly of the Irish West, which he observes with the delicate and passionate attention of an ecologist, and a tragic singer of Ireland and its dramatic history,” the Accademia dei Lincei said. “But with his poetry he has also addressed the seduction…

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Poem of the Week: “The Trees” by Michael Longley

Poem of the Week: “The Trees” by Michael Longley

…urrants’ 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 Longley, The 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 i…

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Selected Poems 1963–1980 | Michael Longley

Selected Poems 1963–1980 | Michael Longley

…o form and “a poetic personality . . . assured and recognizable,” a phrase Longley himself has applied to Louis MacNeice. Poems are represented from Longley’s earliest volumes, including No Continuing City (1969), An Exploded View (1973), Man Lying on a Wall (1976), and The Echo Gate (1979). Note: The original jacket is missing from these copies. The cover of this book is plain white; image shown is the title page. This book is officially out of p…

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Michael Longley to Read at Cúirt International Festival of Literature

Michael Longley to Read at Cúirt International Festival of Literature

…ry issues and for the heavy emotion his poems incite. For more information about A Hundred Doors, available in print and e-book, click here. The Cúirt International Festival of Literature will run from April 24-29. Following Longley’s reading on the 24th there will be poetry workshops throughout the span of the festival and a Poetry Grand Slam on the 27th. For more information about Longley’s reading at the festival and other events, click here….

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Innocence Lost: “Boy-Soldier” by Michael Longley

Innocence Lost: “Boy-Soldier” by Michael Longley

…dren have long died at the hands of their elders. There is a tenderness in Longley’s description of this young soldier’s death; the white, falling objects (“Milky blossoms” and “spring blizzard”) jarringly juxtaposed with blood-soaked hair. As Longley writes, we can hear the “music,” or cries of a child lost with his generation, so close to our “home,” or the present. It is perhaps a call to action as well as a memorial. Boy-Soldier The spear-poin…

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Publication day for ANGEL HILL by Michael Longley

…to share a poem from the volume with you today. It’s been quite a year for Longley, who was awarded the PEN Pinter Prize in June and nominated for the Forward Prize for Best Collection (the winners will be announced later this month). Cataract My eyeball’s frozen. I lie At the bottom of a well. Leaves decorate the ice. Leaning on my eyelid Simon Rankin breaks the surface And reaches into my mind. He brings implements with him, Curious geometry, Bl…

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Poem of the Week: “Heatwave” by Michael Longley

…opposite directions. Flowers, heritage, poetry, and, of course, birds are Longley’s instruments of craft and precision almost belied by his easy manner of short form poetry. Heatwave Feet on fire, a bath filled with cold water, I sit on the edge to cool my ankles And insomnia, and in the small hours I read Ivor Gurney, and I understand His obscurity and muddle, poems That know more than he knows, more than I know: A Severnside hedge-pool’s cloud-…

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Poem of the Week: “Laertes” by Michael Longley

…ories like his are usually reduced by being contained to myth, but through Longley’s artistry, the beauty of the relationship between Laertes and Odysseus, and the tragedy of lost time, become tangible. Laertes When he found Laertes alone on the tidy terrace, hoeing Around a vine, disreputable in his gardening duds, Patched and grubby, leather gaiters protecting his shins Against brambles, gloves as well, and, to cap it all, Sure sign of his deep…

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Praise for Michael Longley

Praise for Michael Longley

…orest University Press has delivered A Hundred Doors by Irish poet Michael Longley, who has yet to receive the American acclaim surrounding many of his contemporaries. In this collection, readers are transported to various locales, but mostly to idyllic Carrigskeewaun, County Mayo, in poems littered with British and Irish speech, bolstered by the metaphoric strengths of his earlier work. Longley, septuagenarian, is ‘the farrier in this townland’ (…

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Poem of the Week: “Birthday Party” by Michael Longley

…ences Carrigskeewaun, a rural town in Ireland whose landscape has inspired Longley’s writing throughout his life. Birthday Party I turned eighty at Carrigskeewaun With grandchildren at the table And in the townland around us Wheatears and dapper stonechats And far more lapwings and curlews Than I expected, a snipe or two, Ringed-plovers in the middle Distance on Thallabaun strand And, where the Owenadornaun Used to meander, sandpipers Nervously wa…

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Selected Poems | Michael Longley

Selected Poems | Michael Longley

Michael Longley’s Selected Poems contains the poet’s own selection from thirty years of writing. The collection reveals the strength and coherence of an extraordinary body of work, which has been celebrated—in Britain and Ireland, but also in the United States—for its lyric intensity, metaphysical wit, and thematic and formal range. Includes selections from No Continuing City (1969), An Exploded View (1973), Man Lying on a Wall (1976), The Echo G…

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Poem of the Week: “Bee Orchid” by Michael Longley

…encourage this weather to stay (please!), we’ve chosen a poem from Michael Longley’s A Hundred Doors, wherein the imagery inspires visions of lazy spring days and childhood adventures so vivid that you can almost feel the sunshine. Enjoy! Bee Orchid We returned to the Byzantine path’s Camomile-strewn marble pavement And dusty oregano to look again, Before the snails, for the bee orchid. Pollineum like a brain, the brainy Bumble-bee disguise. On ou…

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Snow Water

Snow Water

…and a plain vellum jacket. Reviews “Snow Water marks a decisive moment in Longley’s poetic development—as decisive, perhaps as that signaled by Gorse Fires. . . . Longley’s war poetry can stand comparison with the best of its century; and Snow Water adds to the distinguished total, while also doing something radically new.” – The Guardian “Whatever Longley attends to—whether war poetry revivified, the minutiae of the landscape he lives in, its fl…

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The Candlelight Master

The Candlelight Master

…available on Apple Books EPUB version available on Nook Praise for Michael Longley “…With more than 50 years of publishing behind him Longley has built up a monumental legacy of his own. Yet burnished though these poems are, they remain teemingly alive.” –Aingeal Clare, The Guardian “His is a poetics of perpetual return and recognition—seeing again and afresh—that is never grounded in one place.… Unafraid to capture the intimacies and specifics of…

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Angel Hill

Angel Hill

…they overflow into Angel Hill, his exuberant new collection. In addition, Longley has been exploring Lochalsh in the Western Highlands where his daughter the painter Sarah Longley now lives with her family. She has opened up for him her own soul-landscape with its peculiar shapes and intense colors. In Angel Hill the imaginations of poet and painter intermingle and two exacting wildernesses productively overlap. Love poems and elegies and heart-r…

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The Stairwell cover release

The Stairwell cover release

…Greek mythology. The cover blends two recurring themes in this collection: Longley’s use of Greek myth and his relationship with his twin brother, Peter, who recently passed away, and to whom the second half of the volume is dedicated. Longley specifically references the Moliones in “The Twins,” found in the second half of The Stairwell, calling them “Siamese twins, joined below the waist … Two souls, one well-balanced charioteer / Taking the trop…

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The Slain Birds

The Slain Birds

…e interlacing lyrics of The Slain Birds are such a web. Praise for Michael Longley “A contemporary who should endure over the life of our language.” –Donald Hall “One of the most perfect poets alive. There is something in his work both ancient and modern. I read him as I might check the sky for stars.” –Sebastian Barry “Michael Longley’s poems have matched a sense of history and the brutal present with a recurrent feeling for the lyrical moment an…

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A Hundred Doors

A Hundred Doors

…e about his grandchildren’s births is counterpointed by elegies, including Longley’s continuing elegy for the Great War dead. The Mayo townland Carrigskeewaun, with its cast of flora and fauna, also takes on fresh guises. Longley is among Europe’s foremost “ecological” poets. Yet Carrigskeewaun is ultimately symbolic, a microcosm, a “soul-arena.” A Hundred Doors roams in time and space. The title poem evokes the oldest Byzantine church in Greece:…

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The Stairwell

The Stairwell

…out the music for my funeral. . .” The two parts are also linked by Homer. Longley is well-known for his Homeric versions, and the Iliad is a presiding presence—both in poems about the Great War and in the range of imagery that gives his twin’s death a mythic dimension. Yet funeral music can be life-affirming. Longley has built this collection on intricate doublings, not only when he explores the tensions of twinship. The psychologically suggestiv…

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An Interview with Frank Ormsby on THE DARKNESS OF SNOW

…hly into the world of the poem every day. You dedicate the book to Michael Longley “whose book this also is” and describe the “post-war ripening” of your long friendship in one of the poems. Can you tell us about your friendship with Michael Longley and other poets you mention by name in your book? How have they shaped your career, and how have these relationships changed over time? When I came to Belfast as a student in 1966, I quickly became imm…

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Selected Poems | Louis MacNeice

Selected Poems | Louis MacNeice

…ion of Louis MacNeice’s Selected Poems, with an amended preface by Michael Longley. Reviews “Michael Longley has rightly praised in MacNeice the zest that MacNeice praised in Yeats. For all of their differences, the greatest Irish poets of our century have this in common: ‘a leaping vitality—the vitality of Cleopatra waiting for the asp’.” – Jon Stallworthy, Louis MacNeice “. . . There are few places of refuge and still fewer exits, as MacNeice kn…

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Goat’s Milk: New and Selected Poems

Goat’s Milk: New and Selected Poems

…aul Muldoon and Tom Paulin. He is a poet of the truest measure.” – Michael Longley, from the Introduction Kindle version available at Amazon.com iBook version available on iTunes Reviews for Goat’s Milk: New and Selected Poems “If humility does not preclude potency, then these poems are modesty’s triumphs, and equanimity’s trumpet-blasts.” – Killian Quigley, MAKE Magazine “Reading these new poems and returning to those read decades ago has been a…

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The secret is out… Announcing our latest book, The Shack.

The secret is out… Announcing our latest book, The Shack.

…, but in the meantime, you can enjoy the title poem by Michael Longley. As Longley writes in the commentary he wrote to accompany the poem, “Wherever we are—in North Carolina or Missouri, in Belfast or County Mayo—we talk about the inner adventure of poetry.” We are so happy to finally share this particular adventure with you today. The Shack for Dillon & Guinn I lie awake between the two sleeping couples. Their careful breathing in the Blue Ridge…

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The Ghost Orchid

The Ghost Orchid

…erability about love, life and death. A lyric craftsman of genius, Michael Longley has written a book that is fragile and exquisite—like the evanescent ghost orchid itself—yet full of tragic intensity; it is his finest achievement. Reviews “It is a volume in which the preoccupations of a poetic lifetime are richly deepened, intensified and supplemented in poems of lucid, ceremonious courtesy and goodwill: a ‘flowering’ itself, in more than one sen…

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“It felt like a breaking of some taboo I’d placed myself under”: Caitríona O’Reilly on writing Geis

…oric was of its time and unrepeatable. The quadrumvirate of Heaney, Mahon, Longley, and Muldoon have probably had the deepest influence on me. I was taught by Michael Longley when I was nineteen and his workshop was a turning-point in my life. Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin’s work I love for the stunning balance it strikes between mystery and clarity. You have an almost scientific precision in the way you look at objects, no doubt influenced by your study…

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It’s publication day for The Stairwell

It’s publication day for The Stairwell

We are delighted to announce that The Stairwell by Michael Longley is now available on our website! For the Poem of the Week, we offer here the title poem.   The Stairwell For Lucy McDiarmid I have been thinking about the music for my funeral— Liszt’s transcription of that Schumann song, for instance, ‘Dedication’ — inwardness meets the poetry of excess — When you lead me out of your apartment to demonstrate In the Halloween-decorated lobby the p…

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Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day

…ent spectrums of that confusing but beautiful thing known as love. Michael Longley’s poem “The Scissors Ceremony” depicts the heartwarming image of an old couple that are still very much in love. In contrast, John Montague reminds us that being single can sometimes be a good thing in his poem “The Wanderer.” When you are alone, you have more time to focus on yourself and appreciate the small things in life that go into your own happiness. Nuala Ní…

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Frank Ormsby

Frank Ormsby

…: New and Selected Poems (2015), which includes an introduction by Michael Longley. His last collection, The Darkness of Snow, was published in 2017 and was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Awards. The Rain Barrel will be published in 2020. Frank Ormsby has helped strengthen the legacy of literature from Northern Ireland as an editor of poetry and prose. He has edited several anthologies and other books, including The Collected Poem…

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A Lil’ Bit of Lit. Crit.: “The Essential Brendan Kennelly”

A Lil’ Bit of Lit. Crit.: “The Essential Brendan Kennelly”

…publication of The Essential Brendan Kennelly, Terrence Brown and Michael Longley write that “Kennelly’s poetry is instinctively sociable, hospitable as it is the lives, voices, deeds and defining deaths of a host of characters.” Textually, this quality of Kennelly’s work leaps off the page through Kennelly’s written shifts in vernacular and his regular use of ‘quoted’ speech. This weekend, I had the chance to listen to the audio CD included with…

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The WFU Press Holiday Sale & Gift-Giving Guide

…try. For lovers of the natural world, we recommend giving works by Michael Longley, Paula Meehan, and Caitríona O‘Reilly. Longley’s gorgeous and dedicated cataloging of the landscape of his beloved Carrigskeewaun can be appreciated across his oeuvre; we’d recommend his Collected Poems. Meehan engages with ecology and the symbolism of nature, and explores ways humans connect to each other through it, in books like Painting Rain. Reading Geis by O’R…

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Get Your Daily Dose of Poetry

…lly excited about this site because it will feature two poems from Michael Longley’s latest, The Stairwell, tomorrow (11/18). You can sign up for a free weekly email newsletter to keep you up to date on “upcoming poets, special editorial features, and poetry news and reviews.” Writer’s Almanac with Garrison Keillor features a daily poem with an option to listen to the poem via audio link. The site also includes a list of birthdays and events that…

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Radio Signals: An interview with Leontia Flynn

…to or draw from other poets—Seamus Heaney, Gerard Manley Hopkins, Michael Longley, Eavan Boland, Derek Mahon, to name a few. Who would you consider to be your greatest poetic influences? Medbh McGuckian’s debut and early books were game-changing-ly brilliant and it always bothered me that she wasn’t quite recognized the way her postmodern male contemporaries were. Because the ideas she played with involved gender—and motherhood indeed—she was oft…

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The Weather in Japan

The Weather in Japan

…st poems hurdle logical gaps and sidestep reason to get to truths. Michael Longley‘s acute vision is directed outward, and we know him only through the light he casts on the world’s things as he holds them in loving, elegiac frames. Winner of the Irish Times Irish Literature Prize for Poetry, 2001 Winner of the T. S. Eliot Poetry Prize, 2001 Winner of the Hawthornden Prize, 2000 Reviews “Michael Longley’s The Weather in Japan is the best book I ha…

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Lil’ Bit of Lit. Crit.

Lil’ Bit of Lit. Crit.

…greed with something he said in his recent New Criterion review of Michael Longley’s latest book, A Hundred Doors, which WFUP published last May. Logan writes: “Longley’s father won the Military Cross in World War I (a medal equivalent to the Silver Star). The immediacy and aggression of the poems about the war are like a jolt of electricity: Squatting—a sniper’s target— Nothing to wipe your arse with Except letters from home— Love letters—ink and…

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The Essential Brendan Kennelly: Selected Poems

The Essential Brendan Kennelly: Selected Poems

…hundred of his most essential poems, selected by Terence Brown and Michael Longley. Edited and with an Introduction by Terence Browne and Michael Longley; Includes an audio CD of the poet reading his work. Praise for The Essential Brendan Kennelly: Selected Poems “He is the people’s poet . . . He asks impossible questions and suggests unthinkable answers about the things that really matter. And he refuses to be precious or out of touch with the re…

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The Shack: Irish Poets in the Foothills and Mountains of the Blue Ridge

The Shack: Irish Poets in the Foothills and Mountains of the Blue Ridge

…, Vona Groarke, Ciaran Carson, Medbh McGuckian, Conor O’Callaghan, Michael Longley, and Derek Mahon. With lush watercolors by Kenneth Frazelle and an eighteenth-century painting of Old Salem by Christian Daniel Welfare. Footage of Conor O’Callaghan reading one of his poems from the book at the launch on March 13, 2015: Purchase a handmade broadside of the title poem, “The Shack” by Michael Longley, created on the occasion of the launch of this boo…

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The “perfect acoustic” of The Stairwell

The “perfect acoustic” of The Stairwell

…hen we are getting started on a new book. This fall, we’ll publish Michael Longley’s tenth collection, The Stairwell, and preparations are well underway. We’ve done a first read, gathered the cover image and copy, and sent files off to the designer. The title of the book comes from the first poem in the collection, which captures an instant in time standing with a friend in a Halloween-decorated New York stairwell. That moment holds the future (“I…

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Interns’ Corner: So Many New Reviews!!

…ore surprises. Not only did the supplement include a new review of Michael Longley’s A Hundred Doors, but once again, this week’s featured poet, Medbh McGuckian, has received some press as well. Today, Kelly and I had a lot of fun reading Heather Bryant Jordan’s review of My Love has Fared Inland. On the whole, it was interesting to find that Jordan had noticed several things when reading McGuckian that us interns have experienced as well. For Jor…

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Brendan Kennelly

Brendan Kennelly

…Forest University Press published The Essential Brendan Kennelly: Selected Poems, edited and with an introduction by Terence Browne and Michael Longley, and including an audio CD of the poet reading his work….

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Introducing Geis by Caitríona O’Reilly

…sharp with language that is Latinate, tactile, and intuitive, what Michael Longley has called “formally versatile and linguistically copious.” Wake Forest University Press is pleased to add Caitríona O’Reilly to our roster. The publication of Geis marks her North American debut and follows two critically acclaimed prior collections, The Nowhere Birds (2001) and The Sea Cabinet (2006). However, O’Reilly is no stranger to American poetry. Her influe…

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Broadside: The Shack

Broadside: The Shack

…8-1/2″ x 14″ Handmade broadside of Michael Longley’s poem, “The Shack” Typesetting and art design by Craig Fansler, Wake Forest ZSR Library. Printed with an antique letterpress on Hahnemühle Ingres paper. This broadside was created to commemorate the launch of The Shack: Irish Poets in the Foothills and Mountains of the Blue Ridge on March 13, 2015. Poem used with kind permission of the poet…

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Endings and Beginnings

Endings and Beginnings

…footsteps of John Montague, Nuala Ni Dhomhnaill, Paul Durcan, and Michael Longley as former Professors of Poetry. Many of his lectures over the past three years are kept on the Ireland Chair of Poetry website. But, like the leaves of autumn changing on the trees, Clifton is transitioning. The Holding Centre, a book of poetry that Clifton wrote while in his position as Professor of Poetry, will be released in the United States this winter. “And me…

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WFU Irish Festival 2007

…e Wake Forest University Press’s official North American launch of Michael Longley’s Collected Poems, a most important book by this poet who has been called ‘one of the finest lyric poets of our time,’ a poet whom Nobel Prize-winning poet Seamus Heaney has called ‘a keeper of the artistic estate, a custodian of griefs and wonders.’ Free and open to the public. Followed by a book-signing and reception with refreshments. Justin Quinn’s reading spons…

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Still Life

Still Life

…his is indeed writing for dear life. This is a poetry of genius.” –Michael Longley “In Still Life, Ciaran Carson’s poems take their bearings from ‘the moment / of a painting, where everything is at a standstill.’ Death is in the foreground here, but, with clear-eyed good humor, Carson’s long line holds to the particulars of the here and now and stretches into the future to consider the dissolution of clouds, cities, and bodies, and the endurance o…

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Leontia Flynn

Leontia Flynn

…itted and big-hearted, Leontia Flynn looks like the real thing.” – Michael Longley Irish poet Leontia Flynn was born in County Down in 1974. Her first book, These Days (2004), won the Forward Prize for Best First Collection, was shortlisted for the Whitbread Poetry Prize, and saw her named one of twenty “Next Generation” poets by the UK Poetry Book Society. Drives, published in 2008, earned her the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature and a major Ind…

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Richard Murphy, 1927–2018

…It is with great sadness that Wake Forest University has learned of the poet Richard Murphy’s death. We were proud to be his American publisher, releasing The Price of Stone and Earlier Poems in 1985, The Mirror Wall in 1989, and his Collected Poems in 2001. As Michael Longley noted, “Richard Murphy continues to be a poet of great fortitude and resource, one of the finest of our time.”…

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‘Tis the season for poetry readings

…Everyone knows that poetry is best when listened to, so kick back, relax and belatedly celebrate National Poetry Day with some readings from our poets. Ciaran Carson reading “Snow” from Belfast Confetti Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin reads from The Sun-Fish Paula Meehan reads her poem “Death of a Field” from Painting Rain Michael Longley reads “Harmonica” from his Collected Poems Vona Groarke reads “Pier” from Spindrift…

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The Darkness of Snow

The Darkness of Snow

…– David Cooke, The Manchester Review “Ormsby, like Kavanagh before him, sees the universal in the parochial, and produces carefully honed, unerringly accurate depictions, capturing, as Michael Longley puts it in his introduction to the book, ‘something desolate and unsettling [that] shades this poet’s vision.’” – Nessa O’Mahony, Poetry Ireland Review…

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The Irish Origins of Halloween: Five Fun Facts about Samhain

…ter the table top. A candle stub will be his soul. “Hallowe’en” by Michael Longley 1. Halloween’s oldest roots are in an ancient Irish holiday called Samhain (pronounced sah-win)! Samhain—usually translated “summer’s end”—was in part a harvest festival when Celtic tribes held assemblies, and rulers and warriors conferred and made laws. 2. Samhain was considered a kind of New Year, marking the end of summer and the beginning of the dark, cold winte…

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From “The Butterfly Notebook” to The Magpie and the Child: An Interview with Catriona Clutterbuck

…ose friends and relatives, and also by people further afield, like Michael Longley who sent me his two poems “Fragrant Orchid” and “Waterbirds,” and Medbh McGuckian, who wrote “On the Sleeve, How Can Tears Dry in Two Colours?”—all precious texts. There are some collections of poems I was lucky enough to find, which explore the territory of death and loss with very particular nuance, and which have guided and accompanied me during these past eight…

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Collected Poems | Louis MacNeice

Collected Poems | Louis MacNeice

…Ireland, in part because of vigorous support from Irish writers like Edna Longley, Paul Muldoon, and Derek Mahon. MacNeice’s Collected Poems has finally been published in the United States, where readers will now have a chance to approach this underestimated writer on his own terms. . . . What we most want, MacNeice suggests, is simply to ‘know each other better,’ but that possibility depends on laboring blindly through darkness. With the publica…

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“Helen” by Frank Ormsby from GOAT’S MILK

“Helen” by Frank Ormsby from GOAT’S MILK

…intimate moment. In the introduction to Ormsby’s collection, poet Michael Longley’s writes: “Frank Ormsby belongs to that extraordinary generation of Northern Irish poets which includes Ciaran Carson, Medbh McGuckian, Paul Muldoon and Tom Paulin. He is a poet of the truest measure.” Ormsby weaves his artistry with the his personal experiences throughout the collection and in this poem below.   Helen (b. 12 August 1994) The war will soon be over,…

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A Hundred Doors

Michael Longley’s new book A Hundred Doors is already getting rave reviews! Check out this great article in The Guardian about his latest book. And here’s a sneak peak at one of the poems: A Hundred Doors God! I’m lighting candles again, still the sentimental atheist, family Names a kind of prayer or poem, my muse Our Lady of a Hundred Doors. Supervised by a xenophobic Sacristan, I plant in dusty sand Names and faces that follow me As far as wind…

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Louis MacNeice: Collected Poems NY Times Book Review

Louis MacNeice: Collected Poems NY Times Book Review

…k in readership, in part, to support from other Irish writers such as Edna Longley, Paul Muldoon and Derek Mahon. Orr provides an intimate glance into MacNeice’s melancholic childhood, a theme that permeates much of his work. He also praises MacNeice’s versatility via style and content, thoughtfully complimenting MacNeice’s beauty in repetition and refrain. There is a sense of circularity to MacNeice’s work, always harkening back from whence it ca…

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Caitríona O’Reilly

Caitríona O’Reilly

…n poems that are formally versatile and linguistically copious.” – Michael Longley “She understands the limitations of the self and the fragility of the world—but this awareness of temporality in its turn gives O’Reilly’s work its authority and its arresting, lyrical power.” – Neil Hegarty, The Irish Times “The world of her poems is that created by one gazing through a prism. She not only marvels at the strange but recreates it as the mysterious….

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“The Importance of Breathing”: An Interview with Conor O’Callaghan

“The Importance of Breathing”: An Interview with Conor O’Callaghan

…he poem is in many respects the subject of every poem. Every poem, as Edna Longley rightly says somewhere, has poetry as its sub-text. Every poem has, if you like, two subject matters: the thing that it is about (a jar in Tennessee, a globe in North Carolina, mushrooms or whatever), and poetry. NF: The act of swimming appears in this collection as it did in Fiction. What is it about this subject that interests you? COC: I’ve been writing about poo…

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Poetry By Heart

Poetry By Heart

…gly learning “I dwell in Possibility,” by Emily Dickinson as a 17 year old out of enthusiasm and love for the poem. Sinéad Morrissey joins Wake Forest Press poets Michael Longley, Paul Muldoon, and Ciaran Carson as winners of the TS Eliot Prize. Here is the interview. Posted By: Sophie…

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Poem of the Week: “Poem in Praise of Hysterical Men and Women” by Leontia Flynn

…ce and humor in a manner that is wholly and unapologetically real. Michael Longley perfectly describes Flynn as “quick-witted and big-hearted,” a poet of the younger generation whose force and depth of talent continues to grow. Poem in Praise of Hysterical Men and Women Of course only those who have a personality and emotions… –T.S. Eliot, ‘Tradition and the Individual Talent’ The world is born of hysterical men and women. Our teeth are shiny as a…

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The New North: Contemporary Poetry from Northern Ireland

The New North: Contemporary Poetry from Northern Ireland

…ey, Derek Mahon, Ciaran Carson, Paul Muldoon, Medbh McGuckian, and Michael Longley. Reviews Wake Forest University Press continues its impressive dedication to Irish poetry . . . with The New North. . . . [T]he poems and poets offer an insightful, lyrical look into the psyche of 21st-century Northern Ireland.” – Irish America Magazine “American-born editor Chris Agee, who has lived in Northern Ireland for decades, provides a meticulous introductio…

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New Selection of John Montague’s Poetry To Be Published this Fall

…her modes of communication, expression. His poetry reflects this.” Michael Longley, a fellow poet, reflected on the impact Montague had on him from the start: “I took with me to university John Montague’s first slim volume, Forms of Exile. Over the decades I have eagerly awaited each new collection. Montague is a master of song. He has written great poems. He has written immortal poems. It is impossible to imagine the world of poetry (and my own i…

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Christmas in Ireland: Five Things You May Not Know

…r you among the fairy lights Are the zodiac’s animals and people. —Michael Longley, from A Hundred Doors (2011) One of the oldest Christmas carols, “The Wexford Carol,” is believed to have come from Ireland and dates all the way back to the 12th century. It originated in Enniscorthy, County Wexford, and tells the tale of the Nativity. This carol has been translated from Irish into English—you may recognize it from Julie Andrews’ 1966 Christmas alb…

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Pharaoh’s Daughter

Pharaoh’s Daughter

…son, Michael Coady, Peter Fallon, Michael Hartnett, Seamus Heaney, Michael Longley, Medbh McGuckian, Tom MacIntyre, Derek Mahon, John Montague, Paul Muldoon, Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin, and George O’Brien Reviews “[T]he branching-out, or shape-shifting, from Gaelic myth or folk-song to some less romantic or quirkier emblem of the present, is a constant resource of Nuala Ní Dhomhnaill’s poetry; and it’s one of the ways she has rescued the Irish languag…

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