Bernard O'Donoghue

Outliving
  • Outliving

  • Bernard O'Donoghue's magnificent fourth collection of poetry explores its title in a series of beautifully wrought poems whose simple elegance belie their complexity. There are moving elegies for people the poet has outlived. There are poems too about living outside the poet's original environment and the inclination to return there for stories and feelings: the MacNeicean 'tourist in his own country', perpetually restive and homesick.

    Ireland for O'Donoghue is both more real than anywhere else and strangely ghostly - a country where the past is preserved but also where a rural generation is dying out. A place, a moment, a person - each poem reaches out from the particular to a luminous understanding of the uncertainties of life.

Bernard O'Donoghue was born in Cullen, Co. Cork in 1945. He is a Fellow of Wadham College, Oxford, where he teaches Medieval English. His poetry collections include, The Weakness (1991), Gunpowder (winner of the 1995 Whitbread Award for Poetry) and Here Nor There (1999) which was a Poetry Book Society Choice title.

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