God and Patrick Kavanagh: An Anthology
As poets go, Patrick Kavanagh (1904-67) enjoys an exceptionally popular and influential place in the hearts of the Irish public. He offers us a uniquely distilled reflection of ourselves as a people and uncovers for us an intriguing spiritual landscape, both rich and recognisable. In this, his poetry is both original and enduring. It is noteworthy that in Patrick Kavanagh's extant work of published poems, which number 253, no fewer than 138 of these include explicitly religious themes, images or allusions. This means that references to Christian faith, in one way or another, make their appearances in more than half of all his poetic writing. It is for that reason that this collection of poems appears here as an anthology in its own right. Tom Stack offers a commentary on the spiritual content and significance of the sixty poems here selected. This consists of a general introduction to the anthology, together with particular introductions to the three long poems in the collection, The Great Hunger, Lough Derg and Father Mat.
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