March 15, 2010

Ireland in Poetry
Edited by Charles Sullivan
Ireland: A Terrible Beauty
Jill and Leon Uris
The Illustrated History of Ireland
Seán Duffy
Out of Ireland: The Story of Irish Emigration to America
Kerby Miller and Paul Wagner

Irish Eyes – The great Irish poet William Butler Yeats once observed, “Being Irish, he had an abiding sense of tragedy, which sustained him through temporary periods of joy.” The line encapsulates the feisty Irish character – and I offer thanks, again, to the writer (and honorary Irishwoman) Vicki Ruzicka for bringing it to my attention. Another dear friend and feisty writer, Rosemary Tinker, once observed that being Irish means possessing “a particular blend of humor and malice.” Indeed. Paradox is the essence of life, especially when seen through Irish eyes, from Yeats’ “terrible beauty” (borrowed here by Leon and Jill Uris) to the juxtaposition of the grievous and the glorious images and words that fill these fine books.


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