Paroxysm of Excitement

The Kilkenny Arts Festival is a major highlight in my year and my first thought is always about the poets who will be reading there.

As I opened the Programme for this year, I thought of the wondrous evening in 2009 when I sat spellbound, just weeks after my mother’s death, listening to Seamus Heaney read as if I was the only person in St. Canice’s Cathedral. Nothing will ever take away that precious memory.

I pondered on just what poet could take my breath away even half as much as Seamus Heaney and doubted that anyone could.

However, I felt a frantic beating of my heart when I saw that Billy Collins, Poet Laureate of the US (2001-2003),  will be reading at this year’s Festival. To tell the truth, I did about ten double-takes and re-checks just to be sure to be sure that it is THE Billy Collins whom I’ve come to love with a grand passion since being well introduced to him on my poetry thread on Linkedin.

Billy Collins Source: http:whatsnotwrong.wordpress.com
Billy Collins
Source: https://whatsnotwrong.wordpress.com

While I don’t want to wish the Summer away, I can’t wait for August 16th at the Parade Tower of Kilkenny Castle. What I would give to have a chance to talk with this man who has written so many poems that I adore. I can feel Seamus Heaney smiling  as I write this. Well, you might, Seamus; but no matter what you’ll always be my number one!

Walking Across the Atlantic

I wait for the holiday crowd to clear the beach
before stepping onto the first wave.

Soon I am walking across the Atlantic
thinking about Spain,
checking for whales, waterspouts.
I feel the water holding up my shifting weight.
Tonight I will sleep on its rocking surface.

But for now I try to imagine what
this must look like to the fish below,
the bottoms of my feet appearing, disappearing.

Billy Collins

Everything is Going to be All Right ~ Gatherings from Ireland # 322

On Tramore Beach at Daybreak
On Tramore Beach at Daybreak

Did you ever feel the need to post a poem ~ a poem which brings solace and light?

I just love this one from the great Derek Mahon and I hope you do too!

Everything is Going to be All Right

How should I not be glad to contemplate

the clouds clearing beyond the dormer window

and a high tide reflected on the ceiling?

There will be dying, there will be dying,

but there is no need to go into that.

The poems flow from the hand unbidden

and the hidden source is the watchful heart.

The sun rises in spite of everything

and the far cities are beautiful and bright.

I lie here in a riot of sunlight

watching the day break and the clouds flying.

Everything is going to be all right.

Derek Mahon