Patrick Kavanagh (1904-1967) stands out as one of my all time favourite poets and today marks his birth date one hundred and nine years ago.
I’ve made pretty significant changes to my blog today and didn’t really see myself posting anything tonight because it all seems like a bit of a construction site. However, I feel very strongly that Patrick Kavanagh would understand all about change, moving, transitions and the hellishness of perfectionism.
Just take a look a this poem which the man from Co. Monaghan, later to move to Dublin, wrote. This wasn’t just slapped onto a page in a few minutes! It seems so pertinent to me as I have been examining what Social Bridge is all about and how it can combine heavy issue like losing elderly parents with much lighter matters.
Patrick Kavanagh, you are the ultimate inspiration!
A year ago I fell in love with the functional ward
Of a chest hospital: square cubicles in a row
Plain concrete, wash basins – an art lover’s woe,
Not counting how the fellow in the next bed snored.
But nothing whatever is by love debarred,
The common and banal her heat can know.
The corridor led to a stairway and below
Was the inexhaustible adventure of a gravelled yard.
This is what love does to things: the Rialto Bridge,
The main gate that was bent by a heavy lorry,
The seat at the back of a shed that was a suntrap.
Naming these things is the love-act and its pledge;
For we must record love’s mystery without claptrap,
Snatch out of time the passionate transitory.
(Patrick Kavanagh: from The Penguin Book of Irish Poetry)