April 4, 2008

Eavan Boland — “Outside History”

Posted in Poetry at 9:00 am by The Lizard Queen

Outside History

There are outsiders, always. These stars—
these iron inklings of an Irish January,
whose light happened

thousands of years before
our pain did: they are, they have always been
outside history.

They keep their distance. Under them remains
a place where you found
you were human, and

a landscape in which you know you are mortal.
And a time to choose between them.
I have chosen:

Out of myth into history I move to be
part of that ordeal
whose darkness is

only now reaching me from those fields,
those rivers, those roads clotted as
firmaments with the dead.

How slowly they die
as we kneel beside them, whisper in their ear.
And we are too late. We are always too late.

–Eavan Boland, 1990

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1 Comment »

  1. […] posted poems by Irish poets: Eavan Boland: “Outside History“ Seamus Heaney: “Punishment“ W.B. Yeats: “The Second Coming,” […]


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