Marian Kilcoyne is an Irish writer based on the west coast of Ireland. She has been a teacher at senior level, worked professionally in education and management for an Aids Organization, and reviewed fiction and non-fiction for the Sunday Business Post. She attended the Seamus Heaney Centre’s Poetry Summer School at Queen’s University Belfast in 2013. She was featured poet on Poethead – Contemporary Irish women poets, January 9th – 16th 2018. She was short-listed for the 2017 Dermot Healy International Poetry Award. She was placed on the long-list for the 2019 Fish Poetry Prize. www.mariankilcoyne.com.
The Heart Uncut Poemsl by Marian Kilcoyne 68pp, €12.00, ISBN 9781907017551
Click on the basket to add item.
In poem after poem there is a feeling of raw, visceral energy seeking release which doesn’t dissipate into easy closure but finds a new traction in freshly mown words. Animals are shared presences – fox, heron, spider, swallow, thrush – but it is the abiding presence of her home place that roots – ‘any five in the morning is stirring at Killadoon’, (‘Lashed to the Bow’) - and steadies her as here along the shore looking out to Clare Island ‘is where she is not owned, borrowed, retrieved. Not even rejected’, (‘Possession’). Wide-ranging in its attention, from ‘the slash design yachts hicccuping in Port Vauban’ (‘Antibes Reverie’) to the Jewish sacred ritual of taharah, from getting a tattoo to her consideration of the smashed rose-tattooed china cup, to the elemental cosmos ‘bearing gifts of clay, sea and air’ (‘Mornings at Carrowniskey’), her poetry engages with a sense of urgency. Read these poems and then begin again.
Hugh O’Donnell, poet.
Reading Marian Kilcoyne’s collection, The Heart Uncut, is like reading a hymnal, each poem a swelling song of praise for a delicate, diminishing world and its inhabitants. The language in this book is a musical feast — inventive, rich to the ear, piercing to the heart — as Kilcoyne leads a master class in mindfulness, in the paying of an exquisite, generous attention to what is large and small, to what is beautiful and to what is not so beautiful. These poems about nature and time, about life and death and love will leave you ‘dazed as a fool by / their sweet flesh and lip sting stain.’