Philosophically and geographically wide-ranging (as one might expect of a diplomat poet), this second collection by Philip McDonagh features poems inspired by his experiences in places as far afield as India and Finland, at the same time as it sees him find an earth and anchor for those experiences in the realm of family, about which he writes with great tenderness. An insightful guide through political complexities, McDonagh is also very much the lyric poet, remaining open to the unexpected moment of wonder.
“The governing tonality of this collection is restrained, distanced, the ‘voice’ has composed itself judiciously before utterance, and yet the undercurrents of affection, ironic frustration, and constant grief are unmistakable. .. I’m astounded that this important work — in print since 2003 — hasn’t received the kind of attention it richly deserves. Like Neruda, that other shy diplomat, it’s time for Philip McDonagh, already in his fifties, to be acclaimed.”
— James J McAuley, Poetry Ireland Review
ISBN 9781906614300 Paperback
140 x 216 mm, 110 pp