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The Windows of Graceland
New and Selected Poems
RRP: GBP£ 12.99
You Save: GBP£ 1.30
Price: GBP£ 11.69
This title is available for academic inspection (paperback only).
ISBN: 978 1 784102 76 0
Categories: 21st Century, Irish, Women
Imprint: Carcanet Poetry
Published: May 2016
216 x 138 mm
Publisher: Carcanet Press
Also available in: eBook (Kindle), eBook (EPUB), eBook (PDF)
Digital access available through Exact Editions
The Windows of Graceland gathers the cream of the crop from Martina Evans’s five previous collections of poetry, brought up to date by a selection of new and unpublished work. The earliest poems date back to 1998 and Evans’s expatriation from Ireland. A complex nostalgia for her Catholic childhood establishes a central and enduring thread in the writing, the bloody shadow of sectarian conflict commingling with a child’s pastoral of pleated mustard kilts and corduroy paisley dresses, the ‘sighing country roads’, the ‘blue Burnfort evening’. The later poems, written from London, develop a fascination with Americana as the poet’s own cultural displacement takes on substitute forms, the Irish traveller Elvis O’Donnell finding his unlikely double in that other Elvis, of Graceland. Early poems on childhood come full-circle across the selection’s twenty-five year span in more recent poems on motherhood. When the poet’s teenage daughter returns home missing a shoe, ‘I don’t share her grief. / I feel relief / as if the shoe is a coin / paid to the wild / for her safe return.’ From story-teller to free-verse fili, memoirist to satirist, daughter to mother, The Windows of Graceland distils Evans’s full poetic range and power.
Awards won by Martina Evans Winner, 2011 Premio Ciampi Internazionale di Poesia (Ciampi International Poetry Prize) (Facing the Public)
'a subtle, challenging writer with a wonderfully destructive approach to the pieties she describes.'
John McAuliffe, Irish Times Praise for Martina Evans 'Martina Evans [is] brazenly humorous [...] with her dizzyingly wacky free-verse tale-telling.'
The Tablet 'a subtle, challenging writer with a wonderfully destructive approach to the pieties she describes.'
John McAuliffe, Irish Times 'A deceptively casual and enjoyable collection.'
Irish Times 'These look like easy, anecdotal poems but they bite.'
Alan Brownjohn, Sunday Times 'Evan's great skill is in knowing how much to put into a poem. She has a talent for selecting only the most resonant memories, for not over-icing the cake of sentiment. [...] Above all, Evans puts the right words in the right order, a dictum whose simple phrasing embodies its demands.'
Michael Duggan, PN Review
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