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ISBN: 978 1 847771 42 1
Categories: 21st Century, Irish, Women
Imprint: Carcanet Poetry
Published: November 2011
Publisher: Carcanet Press
Also available in: eBook (EPUB), eBook (Kindle)
A high corner of the apple tree shakes
as a thrush pecks and pecks at one of the last apples.
The sun slants onto the thrush and the apple
which has a crater in it.
This is what apples are for,
to be turned into song.
In Moya Cannon's new collection, Hands, the commonplace is transfigured by an attentiveness that jolts us into wonder.
The poems sing of deep connections: the impulse to ritual and pattern that, across centuries, defines us as human; a web of interdependences that sustain the 'gratuitous beauty' of the planet. Hands travels in time and space, mapping journeys we make as ageing, illness, and the deaths of parents shift our responses to our place in the fabric of the world, where we live in the grace of love and sunlight.
In this new collection, Moya Cannon, through intent attention to light and sound and the natural materials that produce them, touches the very principle of life itself. Hands is a profoundly moving set of meditations on what it means to be alive, physically and emotionally. Bernard O'Donoghue
Driving back over the Blue Ridge,
All this green day
Only the shadows
Val de Luz
No Good Reason
Yesterday I was listening on the iPod
The Fertile Rock
Lady Gregory at Cill Ghobnait
The Magician’s Tale
In the Underground Car Park
Brought to Book
‘We Are What We Eat.’
Swans at Nimmo’s Pier
The Red Tree
Consider the Cocosphere
The Important Dead
In the Lava Pipe
The white cyclamen
Flowers at Loughcrew
Apples and Fire
He looks so carefully
Midday at Stockholm Airport
Night Road in the Mountains
Praise for Moya Cannon 'Its sterling qualities are manifest and manifold: a deep interiority and soaring lyricism, and an ability to produce what Tim Robinson has termed 'geophany', a showing forth of the earth.'
Nuala Ni Dhomhnaill 'The intensely lyrical musings on life, landscape and love stir the heart, disturb the settled thought and, more in this collection than in the earlier, soothe the soul. Like her fellow northerner, Seamus Heaney, Cannon digs deep with the pen. And whilst the theme of sea voyaging and water inform the titles of both her books, that which the earth throws up is of equal fascination.'
The Cork Examiner 'Her newly published second collection, The Parchment Boat contains the subtly evoked passion and meditative restraint that was distinctive in Oar, her first collection.'
The Irish Times 'All the journeyings envisaged and chronicled by Moya Cannon are to be sought in a remarkable symbiosis of humanity and the 'natural world', a perceived and felt unity of creation which goes light years beyond any mere empathy of imagining. I should not be surprised if a few of Moya Cannon's phrases become, in time, part of our 'poetry-talking': 'the faulted hills', 'the room-sized fields', 'the clay part of the heart.'
Poetry Ireland Review 'Complicated things happen simply in these poems. The Burren's dove-saints hatch out under the eyes of raptors; old wooden sailboats of Connemara take root in salt water. Moya Cannon's style is as discreet as the advance of spring over her favoured landscapes. It is good to have a collection of her work to hand, for deep re-reading.'
'A Book of Revelations'. read more
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