Sometimes, there aren’t sufficient words for a moment or a season or a feeling. The other side to that coin is that sometimes the wild, the unexpected, or inexplicable … serve the blessed purpose of breaking the words we are used to using and inviting us to make something new from their pieces.
This is one way to talk about poetry.
I think of the way the Scriptures of my own religious tradition open with poetry in the strange shadow of timelessness, orderlessness, and the Creative Will of a Being beyond comprehension. That same collection of histories and prophecies and reflections and wisdom texts ends with poetry in the blazing light of a hopeful future beyond either chaos or order or death or time itself.
Poetry is, among other things, a way to say
“There is more here.
I can’t hand it to you plainly,
so I’ll point in its direction
and, in so doing,
honor the complex and beautiful reality
of… well.. reality”
For Pádraig Ó Tuama, many of the realities that frame his personal and cultural history necessitated a treatment and use of language that bent towards the poetic. Pádraig’s work is born of political strife, poverty, and a dominant religious culture that often largely denied his humanity; it is work that suggests regularly and beautifully, that there is more here.
I’m a fan of his and had been looking forward to this conversation for years. I hope you enjoy it. I think you will.
Check it out.
Links for Pádraig Ó Tuama:
Links For Justin:
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