The Heelers Diaries

the fantasy world of ireland's greatest living poet

My Photo
Location: Kilcullen (Phone 087 7790766), County Kildare, Ireland

Thursday, December 15, 2016

lives of the great poets

The writer Francois Mauriac has a scene in one of his books where a young poet is on a bus quietly reading his own poems in a notebook.
You just know the character is Mauriac himself and that the scene really happened.
A passenger in the seat next to him leans over and says: "That's really good. Is it by Rimbaud?"
And Mauriac feels the first call to greatness in being mistaken for France's most famous poet of the belle epoque.
Something similar happened to my brother Barn at school.
Mrs Docherty the teacher was holding a poetry competition where the kids had to write a poem in French.
She had narrowed it down to two poems, one by Barn and another by Jean Paul who was a native of France and attending Newbridge College for six months as an exchange student.
Jean Paul had actually entered a poem by Rimbaud.
Mrs Docherty gave the prize to Barn.
A few years ago I was asked to do a eulogy in the church at my Aunty Marie's funeral.
I began with Worsdworth's lines:
"A power is passing from the earth
To breathless nature's dark abyss
But when the great and good depart
What is it more than this
That man who is from God sent forth
Doth yet again to God return
Such ebb and flow must ever be
Then wherefore should we mourn"
Back home Uncle Scutch told me that he thought this was the best poem I'd ever written.
There you go bold readers.
Francois Mauriac in his youth was already being mistaken for Rimbaud.
Doctor Barn in his childhood was actually beating Rimbaud in poetry competitions.
And William Wordsworth in death is still being mistaken for me.


Post a Comment

<< Home