What Really Matters

What Really Matters

by Thomas O'Grady
     
 


Home resonates in this collection. Heart longs for the Prince Edward Island birthplace left behind, memory building like early frost on fresh laundry. But there is another sense of home for this poet of the Irish diaspora, deep down in legacies of poetry and family lore, bred-in-the-bone, read in the signs of sea and sky. For O'Grady, the poet is charged with…  See more details below

Overview


Home resonates in this collection. Heart longs for the Prince Edward Island birthplace left behind, memory building like early frost on fresh laundry. But there is another sense of home for this poet of the Irish diaspora, deep down in legacies of poetry and family lore, bred-in-the-bone, read in the signs of sea and sky. For O'Grady, the poet is charged with turning and returning to such legacies of place and time ? with celebrating what really matters. Throughout this dynamic collection, powered by an imagination that gains momentum like a bicycle running downhill, and pressured by exquisitely turned phrase and rhyme, O'Grady maintains an exhilarating grip on language and landscape, on the wondrous details of poetry, place, and home.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"These are the clean, contained poems of a true poet. Again and again, with seeming effortlessness, they strike a perfect balance between straightforwardness and elegance. Their range is vast, their knowledge deep." Mark Strand, former U.S. Poet Laureate "Like the young man pedalling downhill at breakneck speed with a brass trumpet under his arm, Thomas O'Grady's poems tread a balance between disaster and ecstasy, homesickness and sanctuary, elegy and high comedy. His great blue herons, blazing schooners, and children playing dice connect the wilderness to the human heart. What Really Matters is the love-act of a lyric poet writing to the full measure of his powers." Catherine Phil MacCarthy, editor, Poetry Ireland Review "With formal mastery, with diamond-sharp diction, with great learning, and with a wide sweep of feeling, this poetry makes room for itself on that short bookshelf of what really matters for all of us." Fred Marchant, author of Tipping Point "This is a remarkable and finely wrought first collection in which the poet explores his past and encounters ancestral traces in language and in story. The language in these poems is precise and the tone as measured as the well-turned lines, yet there is passion and vitality beneath their mannered surface which make What Really Matters a book not to be missed." Mary O'Malley, author of The Knife in the Wave "Thomas O'Grady's poems of migration and exile are as gracefully poignant as his 'solitary heron, the unearthly gray-blue / form of a displaced soul.' He writes about his home on Prince Edward Island, his sojourns in Ireland and in "the Boston states," the fiddlers and potato diggers and the lost family farm, and the way feelings erupt like "the iron edge / exposed at last, of a long-discarded / cartwheel in the sand." In his first book, O'Grady succeeds in honoring and extending the poetic tradition he loves." Joyce Peseroff, author of A Dog in the Lifeboat and The Hardness Scale

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780773519060
Publisher:
McGill-Queens University Press
Publication date:
03/31/2000
Series:
Hugh MacLennan Poetry Series
Pages:
124
Product dimensions:
5.01(w) x 7.48(h) x 0.39(d)

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