This one is by a poet named Valentin Iremonger (1918-1991). His poetry has a decidedly different feel from the ballad-type poems so often associated with Irish poetry. His profession was official that of a diplomat, though his life as a poet was significant. One source I found credited him (along with Samuel Beckett) with introducing modernism to Irish poetry. I am so taken with this poem, and with several others of his in this anthology, that I am going to be on the search for his collection, Horan's Field, and Other Reservations, which is out of print.
Here is his poem, "Spring Stops Me Suddenly," a poem full of sound, light, and layers. I was so taken with the melancholy playing behind it, like a lilting Irish voice over the mournful pipes.
Spring Stops Me Suddenly
Spring stops me suddenly like ground
Glass under a door, squeaking and gibbering,
I put my hand to my cheek and the tips
Of my fingers feel blood pulsing and quivering.
A bud on a branch brushes the back
Of my hand and I look, without moving, down.
Summer is there, screwed and fused, compressed,
Neat as a bomb, its casing a dull brown.
From the window of a farther tree I hear
A chirp and a twitter; I blink.
A tow-headed vamp of a finch on a branch
Cocks a roving eye, tips me the wink
And, instantly, the whole great hot-lipped ensemble
Of buds and birds, of clay and glass doors,
Reels in with its ragtime chorus, staggering
The theme of the time, a jam-session's rattle and roar
With drums of summer jittering in the background
Dully, and deeper down and more human, the sobbing
Oboes of autumn falling across the track of the tune,
Winter's furtive bassoon like a sea-lion snorting and bobbing.
There is something here I do not get,
Some menace that I do not comprehend,
Yet, so intoxicating is the song,
I cannot follow its thought right to the end.
So up the garden path I go with Spring
Promising sacks and robes to rig my years
And a young girl to gladden my heart in a tartan
Scarf and freedom from my facile fears.
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