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If Ever You Go
[A] map of the city's imagination
– Evening Herald
IF EVER YOU GO: A Map of Dublin in Poetry and Song is a major verse anthology from Dedalus Press in which editors Pat Boran and Gerard Smyth present a unique invitation to explore, street by street, one of the world's most famous literary cities through the poems and songs it has inspired down the ages.
A virtual tour of the city and environs, If Ever You Go takes the reader on a journey through streets broad and narrow, featuring verse both familiar and new, historical and contemporary, by writers whose work adds up to an intimate and revealing portrait of a place and its people. Contributors include poets already synonymous with the city — Swift, Yeats, Joyce, Beckett, Clarke and Kavanagh among them — as well as a host of others, including Kinsella, Heaney, Boland, Bolger and Meehan, who have made some part of it their own.
Street singers and balladeers rub shoulders with haiku and performance poets in an anthology that has its heart set on the very streets we live, work and play on. Groundbreaking in reach, celebratory in outlook, If Ever You Go is a record of the connections and epiphanies, the morning visions and the late-night wanderings that between them make up a map of a city where poetry truly matters. BUY
The Poet C.P. Cavafy’s Mother
DESMOND O'GRADY (1935 – 2014, RIP)
Alexandrian evening. Polite promenade.
Fresh northwester off your Euclidic Corniche.
At home upstairs, off Ramleh Square,
your mother, in lace, claws on to you dressed
upright in dark suit, starched white collars,
hide-behind pince-nez. She slouches to bed at ten.
My mother, Feathereye, with a gesture would say
“Take this money. Keep up your end of the night.”
She departed in angel blue for her hereafter
unlike your Haricleia, your family horror too.
Then, sure she’s asleep, you’re off to the Attarine
deserting the library of your frustrated imagination.
The reality of experience, imagined or lived,
generates the life of what we leave after us.
(from On My Way by Desmond O'Grady, 2005)