An expansive, celebratory collection from “one of the finest and boldest poets of the last half century” (Poetry Review).
Boland's resilient braid of outspoken feminism with Irish identity has given her a following on both sides of the Atlantic. Here is the recent Boland whose rapid verse celebrates women's courage and women's work, both public (several poems acknowledge Mary Robinson, the former president of the Irish Republic) and unsung: the poet remembers herself, when young, asking a statue in Dublin to "Make me a heroine." Here is the poet who learned from Adrienne Rich, among others, how to tackle big topics of loyalty, rebellion, descent and dissent: "No testament or craft of mine can hide/ our presence/ on the distaff side of history." Here, too, is the poet who broke new ground for Irish poetry in the 1980s by depicting with verve both domestic happiness and burdens, "the stilled hub/ and polar drab/ of the suburb." The apprentice poet of the 1970s, learning not only from Rich but Auden, Plath and Yeats, is also here. Boland has never been subtle. Sophisticated readers may find her work hampered by windy rhetoric, as when "The Singers" in the west of Ireland are described "finding a voice where they found a vision." (Mar.)Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information