Verbum et Verbum; Mícheál Fanning (Salmon Poetry)

Verbum et Verbum; Mícheál Fanning (Salmon Poetry)

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In the best of these poems Micheal Fanning relives a South Kerry childhood dominated by the sea: 'the great comforter'. Images are simple and memorable: "the horse gallops/into the lungs of the wind." He moves from the subtle colours of this bird-filled landscape to apocalyptic scenes of massacre in Rwanda, famine in Ethiopia, Romanian orphanages, a fox hunt, a body riven with cancer. He depicts the early monk scribes who painted otters and griffins to illuminate their manuscripts, much as he seeks images to make sense of a world torn by violence, hurt, and unspoken feelings. Grappling with issues of suffering and faith, he constructs his own stone wall of understanding, cementing it with a host of Classical and early Christian allusions: "The Maker arranges nouns, verbs, adjectives .. and places stones to structure/the storm strafed wall."

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