As in Jessie Lendennie's previous collection, Daughter and Other Poems, the poems in 'Walking Here' are connected in perception and spirit. They reflect a lifetime interest in philosophy and spirituality; a search for meaning that explores identity, loss, place and change. These poems take the reader on a journey through a variety of physical, spiritual and emotional landscapes; raising questions and examin...
As in Jessie Lendennie's previous collection, Daughter and Other Poems, the poems in 'Walking Here' are connected in perception and spirit. They reflect a lifetime interest in philosophy and spirituality; a search for meaning that explores identity, loss, place and change. These poems take the reader on a journey through a variety of physical, spiritual and emotional landscapes; raising questions and examining answers.
Jessie Lendennie was born in Arkansas, USA. After years of travel, she
settled in Ireland in 1981. Her previous publications include a
book-length prose poem Daughter (1988); reprinted as Daughter and
Other Poems in 2001. She complied and edited: Salmon: A Journey in
Poetry, 1981-2007; Poetry: Reading it, Writing It, Publishing It (2009) and Dogs Singing: A Tribute Anthology (2010). She is co-founder (1981) and Managing Director of Salmon Poetry. Her poems, essays and articles have been widely published and she has
given numerous readings, lectures and writing courses in Ireland and
abroad, including Yale University; Rutgers University; The Irish
Embassy, Washington D.C; The University of Alaska, Fairbanks and
Anchorage; MIT, Boston; The Loft, Minneapolis, MN; Café Teatre,
Copenhagen, Denmark; the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville; The
Irish American Cultural Centre, Chicago and The Bowery Poetry Club, New
York City. She is currently working on a memoir To Dance Beneath the Diamond Sky.
Grattan Strand, Galway
Has become my life
The air, the light
Clouds like the softest
The first autumn
I have been here
Long before the air
Smelt of change
And every mood
Has its vision
The horizon is both
And the edge of the sea
And my life is bound
By every early morning
Wanting to be here
Wanting to be gone
Can you be nostalgic for a place
You’ve never lived?
‘Dublin in the rare ould times’
Poignant tune on early morning radio.
1979 Dublin empty streets
Ha’penny Bridge Bookshop –
Smell of discovery.
How can you live there and not live there?
Dublin was never my choice
Coming from London in search of space
And the clarity that defined poetry
What did I see of Dublin then?
Trinity College – rarified intellectual life
And a tight village of its own.
No, much earlier;
With that ‘Portrait…‘, but I was never a young man
I was a girl in New York City
Troubled by a boy in that even rarer ould Dublin
Certainly not my times, never never my times.
Years later on O’Connell Bridge
I thought of that Liffey
How one image overlays another
The imaginative and the sensual
Here is recognition, here is, perhaps, reality.
West Coast i.m. Carl Wilson
The usual cows graze on the hills outside my window Rotating up and down; Bas-relief on big feet The weather, as usual, is a sun that comes and goes Flits across the valley without ceremony Fifty years on and the Beach Boys stream out from the radio Bringing that other West Coast right here to my sunless place Hawthorne and chubby Carl Wilson in 6th grade Spin-the-bottle parties and hide and seek Figs rotting in back alleys in the ever-present heat Another boring LA suburb sleeping before the world Became a California surf And, you could say, before the ocean became a metaphor For escape, for our irreconcilable lives.