Product DescriptionPaddy Bushe’s latest collection of poems opens with a stirring suite on music and art, seeing them not as rarefied experiences but as fundamental and nourishing encounters for both their makers and their audience. The distinction between here and elsewhere is blurred, and the playing of an Irish piper seems echoed by that of other musicians in far-flung parts where the poet’s enthusiasm for travel and hill-walking takes him. The transition from such open, light-filled spaces to the more uncertain areas of Irish political life makes perfect sense in Bushe’s work, the poet’s freedom bringing with it a responsibility to engage. And Bushe’s defence of a local arts centre is lifted far above what might have been a parochial dispute into a passionate argument for access to the arts beyond favouritism or political interference. On a Turning Wing contains some of Bushe’s finest sketches of the natural world, as well as touching lyrics on the birth of a grandchild and the joy and consolation of companionship and love.
Blackbird for Ciairín, three months pregnant The scissoring blades had come so close That I almost sliced the nest and its three Speckled blue eggs, suddenly and brutally Exposed, balanced, on a few new shoots Of the hedge I was cutting. And I thought She would never return, that the nest And eggs would shrivel away into a sad Might have been. But less than an hour Saw her brown tail again cocked over the nest, Her yellow beak and accusing eye willing me Not to betray her again, willing the wind Not to capsize her world, willing the blades To hold off awhile. And now a gale has come And gone, and she is still sitting on the eggs, And I am holding my breath day after day, Willing her just a few more weeks of grace. May 2013