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The Song the Oriole Sang

The Song the Oriole Sang

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Philosophically and geographically wide-ranging (as one might expect of a diplomat poet), this second collection by Philip McDonagh features poems inspired by his experiences in places as far afield as India and Finland, at the same time as it sees him find an earth and anchor for those experiences in the realm of family, about which he writes with great tenderness.

An insightful guide through political complexities, McDonagh is also very much the lyric poet, remaining open to the unexpected moment of wonder.

Reviews from Philip McDonagh's previous collections:

"Allusive and melodious, the poems are a wonderful balance of emotion and intellectual control"
Frontline (India)

"It is audacious to invoke the bombing of Dresden in a context of private grief, but it is entirely warranted in this wonderfully sustained long reverie-poem. In fact, the most unusual thing about this book in our era is that the long poems here are
consistently the best. The pattern is sustained through the Indian poems of the book's final section which are just as impressive as the Dresden poem."
The Irish Times

Philip McDonagh was born in Dublin in 1952 and attended schools in Dublin and Copenhagen, and university in Oxford. As a diplomat he has had postings throughout Europe and between 1994 and 1999 worked at the Irish Embassy in London where he helped to develop the Peace Process. Most recently he has been Irish Ambassador to India. In 1989 he was one of a group of five poets with introductory selections published as Dedalus Introductions and in 2003 published his first full-length collection with Dedalus, Carraroe in Saxony. Since then an expanded work, including this earlier book, has been published in India as Memoirs of an Ionian Diplomat. Philip McDonagh is currently Irish Ambassador to Russia.