“Remembering Carrigskeewaun”

Monday, December 12, 2016 - 4:46 pm

“Remembering Carrigskeewaun”

A wintry night, the hearth inhales
 And the chimney becomes a windpipe
 Fluffy with soot and thistledown,
 A voice-box recalling animals:
 The leveret come of age, snipe
 At an angle, then the porpoises'
 Demonstration of meaningless smiles.
 Home is a hollow between the waves,
 A clump of nettles, feathery winds,
 And memory no longer than a day
 When the animals come back to me
 From the townland of Carrigskeewaun,
 From a page lit by the Milky Way.

This poem is excerpted with permission from Collected Poems. For more poetry, visit our Poetry Radio Project.

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Michael Longley

has written more than 20 books of poetry, including Collected Poems, Gorse Fires, and his most recent collection, The Stairwell. He was the professor of poetry for Ireland from 2007 to 2010 and is the winner of the Whitbread Poetry Prize, the T.S. Eliot Prize, the Hawthornden Prize, and the Griffen Prize. In 2015 he was honored with the Freedom of the City of Belfast.

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