Paul Durcan's 'The Girl With The Keys To Pearse Cottage'

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Paul Durcan’s intensely lyrical poetry was incredibly thought provoking to study. He offered us memorable, striking, and powerful insights into both his personal life and his view on society. He reflects on personal issues such as marriage, familial relationships, and also on his deep sense of personal failure. All of this is conveyed through an exquisite array of metaphors and beautifully crafted symbols. These insights into human experiences are enriched by his ability to use dark humour in his poems and startling, provocative language to make his work incredibly memorable and appealing. He also excellently employs repetition to emphasize his views and feelings, making his work incredibly accessible. Durcan expresses a range of incredibly…show more content…
My favourite example of this is his poem ‘The Girl with the keys to Pearse’s cottage’. The cottage is an excellent metaphor crafted to symbolize Pearse’s ideals for Ireland. He personifies the dream of an established independent Ireland when he says, “Her name was Cait Killan”. However the striking aspect of this poem is how he highlights the failure of the Irish Government, and how ideals collapse when being implemented. He writes, “I recall wet thatch and peeling jambs And how all was best seen from below”. This is an incredibly crafted symbol to allow us understand the profound issues facing Ireland. This is exacerbated when he says “Our world was strange because it had no future”. This biting social commentary is expressed through wonderful metaphor making it incredibly accessible to the reader. Also in ‘Nessa’ he writes “I met her on the first of august, in the Shnagri-La Hotel”. This clever symbolism expresses how it felt like the height of summer and a utopia when he met her. Another excellent example of this is in ‘Windfall’ when he talks of “Goya sketching Goya among the smoky mirrors.” This shows us the beauty and perfection he feels his family encapsulates. The use of such symbolism makes his work so easy to relate to and incredibly

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