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Poem of the Week - ‘Things That Needed Saying’ by Edward O’Dwyer

That’s the thing with those nights,
and then that night
we both went and said those things;
the countless, innumerable things
collected up
over all those nights;
the innumerable, infinite things
we shouldn’t have said
and have been
all those nights since
wishing we hadn’t;
the countless things
we really didn’t mean;
all those things 
that needed saying
that night 
just the same.


This week’s poem comes from Edward O’Dywer’s debut collection, The Rain of Cruise’s Street (Salmon Poetry, 2014). Leafing through O’Dywer’s book, you find a great range of perspectives and emotions, from sad and poignant to wry, offbeat humor. Reading more closely, you begin to see that this mixing takes place at the level of the individual poems, too. What the back cover of the collection calls O’Dywer’s “pleasure in misdirection” keeps the reader guessing all the time about whether we are supposed to be moved or amused by the poems and their subject matter, all of which makes for very engaging, highly enjoyable read.

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