“Seán Mac Falls is an authentic poet. His voice is his own, and his fusion of Gaelic and North American traditions is refreshingly unfashionable.” —Harold Bloom
The great tradition of Irish poetry courses through Seán Mac Falls’ blood and into his lines, as if he has spent a lifetime inhaling the sea breezes, cliffs, and peat bogs, ennobled from William Butler Yeats to Seamus Heaney to Eavan Boland. Here in a generous volume is a stunning treasury of pleasures, direct and appealing in voice, earthbound and empyrean in spirit, epistemological and rare.
“Mac Falls looks at the old masters as exemplars and indeed, the first thought I had when reading his work was that W. B. Yeats had found a suitable heir. Indeed Mac Falls, like Yeats, uses Gaelic on occasion and his work has a sonorousness that calls to mind poems like the ‘Lake Isle of Innisfree’ and ‘Cuchulain Comforted.’ Here the lyric is more porous to how the outside world impinges on the imagination in the very process of creation and the result is limpid and languorous. His sense of craftsmanship is immaculate . . . his syllables glisten with the inborn radiance of certain gemstones.”
—Ravi Shankar, Contemporary Poetry Review
“In an age of prosaic verse, he [Mac Falls] uses a more charged and resonant language . . . bardic.”
—Richard Wilbur, former U.S. Poet Laureate
“I was stirred and cheered by the vigour of them [20 Poems]. Whitman seems to be among his ancestors, as well as Yeats.” —John Carey, Merton Professor of English Oxford, also critic, Sunday Times (London)
“‘An ocean of bloom in all direction winked’ about sums it up. I admire above all else in poetry that energy and discipline which knows no words can answer to the world but goes on trying anyway. Hopkins had it, and Dylan Thomas, too, and he [Mac Falls] has it.” —Theo Dorgan, former director of Poetry Ireland
Seàn Mac Falls was born in Boston and grew up in the rural New England townlet of Canton, Norfolk County, Massachusetts, on the shores of his beloved Bolivar Pond. For much of his youth he was a songwriter in Los Angeles, and travelled widely, visiting over thirty countries. He moved to Shankill, Ireland, in 1993, studied Irish literature and folklore in Dublin, and is a dual citizen of Ireland/America. He has written seven collections of poetry: 20 Poems, The Blue Falcon, iKu, Moon Harvest Under Wood, Fables and Whim, Love Songs of Skye, and Garden Theology. He now lives in Port Angeles, Washington.