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New Collected Poems

Eavan Boland

New Collected Poems
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Categories: 20th Century, 21st Century, Irish, Women
Imprint: Carcanet Poetry
Publisher: Carcanet Press
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(Pub. Jul 2012)
£14.95 £13.45
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(Pub. Nov 2005)
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  • O swan by swan my heart goes down
    Through Dublin town, through Dublin town.

    from 'Liffeytown', 1962
    Ten years ago Carcanet published Eavan Boland's first Collected Poems, a book which confirmed her place at the forefront of modern Irish poetry. The New Collected Poems brings the record of her achievement up to date, adding The Lost Land (1998) and Code (2001). It also fills out the early record, reproducing two key poems from 23 Poems (1962), New Territory (1967), The War Horse (1975) and her later books; it includes passages from her unpublished 1971 play Femininity and Freedom. Following the chronology of publication, the reader experiences the exhilarating sense of development, now incremental, now momentous.

    Her writing and example are vitally enabling for young writers and readers; she traces a measured process of emancipation from conventions and stereotypes, writing now in a space she has cleared not by violent rejection, but by dialogue, critical engagement and patient experimentation with form, theme and language.
    Author's Note

    from 23 Poems, 1962
    The Liffey beyond Islandbridge

    New Territory, 1967
    The Poets
    The Gryphons
    The Pilgrim
    New Territory
    The Dream of Lir's Son
    Belfast vs Dublin
    Requiem for a Personal Friend
    A Cynic at Kilmainham Gaol
    From the Painting Back from Market by Chardin
    The Comic Shakespeare
    Yeats in Civil War
    The Flight of the Earls
    After the Irish of Egan O'Rahilly
    The King and the Troubadour
    Athene's Song
    The Winning of Etain

    from 'Femininity and Freedom', 1971
    'Deidre and Cathal in conversation'

    The War Horse, 1975
    The Other Woman
    The War Horse
    Child of Our Time
    A Soldier's Son
    The Famine Road
    Cyclist with Cut Branches
    The Botanic Gardens
    Ready for Flight
    The Laws of Love
    The Family Tree
    Naoise at Four
    From the Irish of Pangur Ban
    Elegy for a Youth Changed to a Swan
    O Fons Bandusiae
    Dependence Day
    Conversation with an Inspector of Taxes
    The Atlantic Ocean
    Chorus of the Shadows
    The Greek Experience
    Suburban Woman
    Ode to Suburbia
    The Hanging Judge

    In Her Own Image, 1980
    Tirade for the Mimic Muse
    In Her Own Image
    In His Own Image
    Making Up

    Night Feed, 1980
    Domestic Interior
    Night Feed
    Before Spring
    Fruit on a Straight-Sided Tray
    After a Childhood Away from Ireland
    The Muse Mother
    A Ballad of Home
    Patchwork or the Poet's Craft
    In the Garden
    Degas's Laundresses
    Woman in Kitchen
    Woman Posing
    It's a Woman's World
    Tirade for the Epic Muse
    The New Pastoral
    On Renoir's The Grape Pickers
    'Daphne with her thighs in bark'
    The Woman Changes Her Skin
    The Woman Turns Herself into a Fish
    The Woman in the Fur Shop
    The Woman as Mummy's Head
    A Ballad of Beauty and Time

    The Journey, 1987
    I Remember
    Mise Eire
    Self-Portrait on a Summer Evening
    The Oral Tradition
    The Unlived Life
    The Bottle Garden
    Suburban Woman: A Detail
    The Briar Rose
    The Women
    The Fire in Our Neighbourhood
    On Holiday
    Growing Up
    There and Back
    The Wild Spray
    The Journey
    Listen. This is the Noise of Myth
    An Irish Childhood in England:1951
    Fond Memory
    Canaletto in the National Gallery of Ireland
    The Emigrant Irish
    Tirade for the Lyric Muse
    The Woman takes her Revenge on the Moon
    The Glass King

    Outside History, 1990
    I Object Lessons
    The Black Lace Fan My Mother Gave Me
    The Rooms of Other Women Poets
    Object Lessons
    On the Gift of The Birds of America by John James Audubon
    The Game
    The Shadow Doll
    The River
    Mountain Time
    The Latin Lesson
    Bright-Cut Irish Silver
    We Were Neutral in the War
    II Outside History: A sequence
    I The Achill Woman
    II A False Spring
    III The Making of an Irish Goddess
    IV White Hawthorn in the West of Ireland
    V Daphne Heard with Horror the Addresses of the God
    VI The Photograph on My Father's Desk
    VII We Are Human History. We Are Not Natural History
    VIII An Old Steel Engraving
    IX In Exile
    X We Are Always Too Late
    XI What We Lost
    XII Outside History
    III Distances
    The Nights of Childhood
    The Carousel in the Park
    Spring at the Edge of the Sonnet
    Our Origins Are in the Sea
    Midnight Flowers
    Doorstep Kisses
    A Different Light
    Hanging Curtains with an Abstract Pattern in a Child's Room
    Ghost Stories
    What Love Intended

    In a Time of Violence, 1994
    The Singers
    I Writing in a Time of Violence: A sequence
    1 That the Science of Cartography is Limited
    2 The Death of Reason
    3 March 1 1847. By the First Post
    4 In a Bad Light
    5 The Dolls Museum in Dublin
    6 Inscriptions
    7 Beautiful Speech
    II Legends
    This Moment
    The Pomegranate
    At the Glass Factory in Cavan Town
    The Water-Clock
    A Sparrow Hawk in the Suburbs
    In Which the Ancient History I Learn Is Not My Own
    The Huguenot Graveyard at the Heart of the City
    The Parcel
    Lava Cameo
    The Source
    III Anna Liffey
    Anna Liffey
    Time and Violence
    The Art of Grief
    A Woman Painted on a Leaf

    The Lost Land, 1998
    I Colony
    1 My Country in Darkness
    2 The Harbour
    3 Witness
    4 Daughters of Colony
    5 Imago
    6 The Scar
    7 City of Shadows
    8 Unheroic
    9 The Colonists
    10 A Dream of Colony
    11 A Habitable Grief
    12 The Mother Tongue
    II The Lost Land
    The Lost Land
    Mother Ireland
    The Blossom
    Ceres Looks at the Morning
    Tree of Life
    Dublin, 1959
    Watching Old Movies When They Were New
    The Last Discipline
    The Proof that Plato Was Wrong
    The Necessity for Irony
    Formal Feeling

    Code, 2001
    I Marriage
    I In Which Hester Bateman, Eighteenth-Century English Silversmith, Takes an Irish Commission
    II Against Love Poetry
    III The Pinhole Camera
    IV Quarantine
    V Embers
    VI Then
    VII First Year
    VIII Once
    IX Thankëd be Fortune
    X A Marriage for the Millennium
    XI Lines for a Thirtieth Wedding Anniversary
    II Code
    Making Money
    Exile! Exile!
    Once in Dublin
    How We Made a New Art on Old Ground
    Emigrant Letters
    The Burdens of a History
    Horace Odes: II:XI
    Hide this Place from Angels
    Limits 2
    How the Earth and All the Planets Were Created
    A Model Ship Made by Prisoners Long Ago
    Is It Still the Same
    Suburban Woman: Another Detail
    Irish Poetry

    Index of First Lines
    Index of Titles

    Born in Dublin in 1944, Eavan Boland studied in Ireland, London and New York. Her first book was published in 1967. She has taught at Trinity College, University College Dublin, Bowdoin College in Maine, and at the University of Iowa. She was Mabury Knapp Professor in the Humanities at Stanford University, ... read more
    Awards won by Eavan Boland Winner, 2020 Costa Poetry Award
    (The Historians)
    Winner, 2017 Bob Hughes Lifetime Achievement Award
    Praise for Eavan Boland
    '...She has a dazzling gift for marrying the poem's narrative to its underlying considerations and themes, her carefully enacted restraint heightening the impact of the frequently stunning closing image.'

    Maya C. Popa, Poetry Review

    'The poems, all of them, have that familiar, spare, feel to them - the clarity of cold water, the measured cadence, the plain diction and the leaping insight so characteristic of her mature work - but there is grief here of a depth and of a kind that chills the heart... against the darkness that eddies and gathers in this, the last book we will have from her hand, there is indeed redemptive light'

    Theo Dorgan, Dublin Review of Books

    'This is a fitting tribute to a poet whose work has revised history as we know it and whose talent will be much missed.'

    Poetry Book Society Winter Bulletin

    'The first poem in Boland's book, The Fire Gilder, is one of the best Irish poems of the past half-century.'

    Colm Tóibín, The Irish Times

    'Truly consumable, enjoyable and emotive... all the things that great poetry should be.'

    Jasmine Reads, YouTube

    '[The Historians] zooms in with characteristic musicality and intelligence on what the stories that are often overlooked - those of women'

    Rishi Dastidar, The Guardian Poetry Books of the Year 2020

    'It is, as came to be expected from Boland, filled with stories of ordinary Irish women, sensitively rendered in her understated verse. In revisiting the otherwise erased experiences of her subjects, Boland asks us to reconfigure our own understanding of the past, though she acknowledges the difficulties of that, too'
    The New Statesman
    'There's a poignancy here that is hard to avoid... This modest collection is welcome and those who have not read Boland - few though they may be - will find here at least an introduction to her always-potent art. For others, it will serve as a coda to a poetic life well lived.'
    Books Ireland Magazine
    'It feels, reading it in the wake of her death, to be unsettlingly prophetic, a fitting close to the life's work of a great poet'
    Seán Hewitt, The Irish Times
    '... a rich, unsettling moral adventure in memory and responsibility.'
    Theo Dorgan
     Eavan Boland's A Journey with Two Maps: Becoming a Woman Poet contains essays both personal and public written in a tone urgent and wise, with astute observations on her own trajectory as a poet and the work of Elizabeth Bishop, Sylvia Plath and Paula Meehan, among others.
    Colm Toibin, The Irish Times, Our Favourite Books of 2011
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