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In a Town of Five Thousand People [Paperback]

Frank McGuinness
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
RRP: 10.50
Price: 8.35 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Product details

  • Paperback: 104 pages
  • Publisher: The Gallery Press; First edition (30 Oct 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 185235545X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1852355456
  • Product Dimensions: 21.4 x 13.6 x 1.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,464,562 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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4.0 out of 5 stars Poetry from a Giant 13 Nov 2012
Format:Hardcover
Frank McGuinness, Professor of Creative Writing in UCD, has just had published by The Gallery Press, a new collection of poetry In a Town of Five Thousand People. With echoes of 'we're not worthy' echoing round my head as I approach the review of such a giant in literature and as his bearded face stares out at me from the back cover, I read of his four other poetry collections, his dozen plays and his twenty adaptations of European classics, with his version of Ibsen's A Doll's House winning a 'Tony' award. But it is we, the public, who are the readers of his work, so taking a breath I dive in.
In four parts, this is a fine collection with many titles being the names of famous actors, literary theorists, place names, cities and Dublin streets. And in truth it's a literary students' dream. With titles such a "Roland Barthes", "Walter Benjamin" and "Jacques Derrida" you don't know whether to run or get out your uni text books again.
Many of the poems are in memory of friends lost, and to a large degree these poems are about looking back - to great artists, designers, authors and actors, looking back on Dublin as he knew it.
From the first poem "How to Build Your Gondola" inspired by Canaletto's rather derelict and dirty view of Venice in his painting 'Rio del Medicanti' he moves into Part One with the poem "The Town Next To Us" which opens powerfully with the statement "Never liked it much-the town next to us."
McGuinness's poem "Francis Bacon" does not disappoint. Gloriously decadent a line from the poem reads, "I see life through the green delicious lens/ of champagne bottles I down with pleasure." and continues on "If I had a sister I'd call her Cassandra./ I'd marry her, were she the marrying kind./ Let her prophesy our incestuous doom!".
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