Skip to main content

Dublin Arid Port (For Poetry)

When one arrives at Dublin airport, one is (rightly) met by poetry - lines of Heaney's. It seems fitting, somehow, to be so welcomed to Ireland - a land that tends to be thought of as particularly welcoming to poets. However, as one leaves Ireland, by way of its Dublin airport, a different vision is presented (a sort of back of the hand slap to any poetry lovers): resident booksellers, Hughes & Hughes, that famous chain, has a flagship bookshop at the airport, that currently has a (new) policy, of SELLING NO POETRY BOOKS. Nada. None. Zip.

I searched, today, high and low, among the Aherns, Kings, the Lees, the Orwells, the Ludlums, the Reichs, the candybars, and the books on leadership and macroeconomics and war, the lads mags, the chicklit, the still water, and in all that vast space, there was Irish Fiction, but no Irish Poetry. That's more than odd. It is borderline idiotic. No, strike that. It is idiotic.

The thousands who fly home to America, to England, to wherever, who pass through this place, must sometimes hunger (a little) for a poem here or there - maybe some Mahon, some Muldoon, some Boland. A little Yeats perhaps? They've seen the place, now maybe they want to take home some of the poetry - if even only a naff anthology. So, it is idiotic from a bottom line perspective (one shelf of poetry, prominently placed, would move books) - but also sad. Sad, and indicative.

Who is the buyer for Hughes & Hughes? Who thought stocking Zero Poetry at the last point before departure was a Good Thing? People fly every day, thirsting for poems to soothe them at 35,000 feet. I spoke to the manager, and he was very helpful and polite. He agreed it was a mistake, and that poetry would indeed "fly off the shelves" if stocked. He has promised to revisit the No Poetry Policy at Hughes & Hughes at Dublin Airport. Poetry Travellers, do keep me updated.

Popular posts from this blog


Like a crazed killer clown, whether we are thrilled, horrified, shocked, or angered (or all of these) by Donald Trump, we cannot claim to be rid of him just yet. He bestrides the world stage like a silverback gorilla (according to one British thug), or a bad analogy, but he is there, a figure, no longer of fun, but grave concern.

There has long been a history of misogynistic behaviour in American gangster culture - one thinks of the grapefruit in the face in The Public Enemy, or Sinatra throwing a woman out of his hotel room and later commenting he didn't realise there was a pool below to break her fall, or the polluted womb in Pacino'sScarface... and of course, some gangsta rap is also sexist.  American culture has a difficult way with handling the combined aspects of male power, and male privilege, that, especially in heteronormative capitalist enclaves, where money/pussy both become grabbable, reified objects and objectives (The Wolf of Wall Street for instance), an ugly fus…


According to the latest CBS, ABC, etc, polls, Clinton is still likely to beat Trump - by percentile odds of 66% to 33% and change. But the current popular vote is much closer, probably tied with the error of margin, around 44% each. Trump has to win more key battleground states to win, and may not - but he is ahead in Florida...

We will all know, in a week, whether we live in a world gone madder, or just relatively mad.

While it seems likely calmer heads will prevail, the recent Brexit win shows that polls can mislead, especially when one of the options is considered a bit embarrassing, rude or even racist - and Trump qualifies for these, at least.

If 42-45% of Americans admit they would vote for Trump, what does that say about the ones not so vocal? For surely, they must be there, as well. Some of the undecided will slide, and more likely they will slide to the wilder and more exciting fringe candidate. As may the libertarians.

Eyewear predicts that Trump will just about manage to win th…


Announcing the Shortlist for the 2016 Sexton PrizeSeptember 13, 2016 / By Kelly Davio
Eyewear Publishing is pleased to announce the shortlist for the 2016 Sexton Prize. The finalists are, in no particular order, as follows:

HISTORY OF GONE, Lynn Schmeidler
SEVERE CLEAR, Maya Catherine Popa
SIT IN THE DARK WITH ME, Jesse Lee Kercheval

The shortlist was selected by Eyewear’s Director Todd Swift with Senior Editor Kelly Davio. Don Share of Poetry Magazine will select the winning manuscript, which will be released at the 2017 AWP conference in Washington, D.C. The winner will be announced in October. 
Congratulations to our finalists!