ON FIRST READING JOHN GOODBY’S ‘IRISH POETRY SINCE 1950’ by Barry Tebb
Barbarous insult to Yeats’ memory and Claudel’s
Allen, thank God you are dead, you who breathed the air of Apollinaire,
Ghost of Reverdy bear witness to the mendacity of his clamour,
Hart Crane, rise from the estuary of the great river you drowned in,
John Clare, rise from your country churchyard grave,
Gray, from your carvиd tomb and Wilde, cast off your winged shield
In Pиre Lachaise,
Rise poets, rise and drive the barbarous horde without the sacred gates
Where it has crept and quenched the flame, rendering the Nine silent
And bereft and covered in shame.
Pastmaster of Post Modernist jargon, defiler of the tombs of great poets
Whose souls hover in Elysium or crouch along the banks of black Lethe
Begging a crown to lay on Charon’s palm.
Souls of the great dead rise and deliver us from one who negates
Poetry as the realm of the numinous, toyer with words, vain hack of
Spoiler of the silver stream of poetry’s wind-harp voice unseen
Traducer, seducer, traitor, hands red with blood, bearer of the ultimate guilt
Of trahison des clercs, murderer of the subtle spirit of Mallarmй,
Defiler of poetry’s purity as defined by Rilke and Valйry
Praiser of ultimate poetastry-Duhig’s penny ranting-condemner of Jimmy Simmons-
One Leeds Jimmy who could fix the world’s Duhigs once and for all,
Write them into the ground and still have a hundred lyrics in his quiver.