It dances on draughts
that do not disturb me,
a fleck of dust, soaring
the micro-Boreas of a corridor.
I was made wait, and the mind
idles over distance. Somewhere,
a Chaos-butterfly is flapping
its wings. I have no ear
for diminutive beats, and this tremble
is perceptible to the eye only.
Or perhaps a corridor is the bell jar
in that theory. Ive attached myself
to dust and feel it in my bones-
if this fleck sinks from sight
it was a bird of ill omen.
JOSEPH WOODS Director of Poetry Ireland, the national organisation for the promotion of poetry in Ireland with four core activities: Publications, Education, Events and Resources & Information. Also member of the Board of the Franco-Irish Festival and Imram festival of Irish language literature and also on the editorial Board of New Writing, The International Journal for the Practice and Theory of Creative Writing, University of Wales, Bangor. Amongst his Publications we find: Sailing to Hokkaido, The Worple Press, UK, 2001, Bearings, Joseph Woods, The Worple Press, UK., 2005., Our Shared Japan, An anthology of contemporary Irish poetry. Edited by Irene De Angelis & Joseph Woods, Dedalus Press, Dublin, 2007. Also journals such as The Irish Times, Poetry Ireland Review, Cyphers, Cuirt Journal, Stand Magazine, The Gettysburg Review, Agenda, The Honest Ulsterman, Journal of Irish Studies IASIL-Japan, The Café Review.He was awarded the Patrick Kavanagh Award 2000 for best-unpublished collection. Woods places himself in his poems. In many he is a self-conscious pilgrim traveller, in conversation with demandingly different but enriching cultures (e.g. Japan, Sicily). Joseph Woods arrives on the list with many accomplishments – a Patrick Kavanagh Award for best first collection, an MA in Creative Writing, and the directorship of Poetry Ireland. Woods’ tone is distant, yet his writing has a striking grace and poise. Woods’ approach is deceptively simple. His poetry is very visual and he conveys an accurately the traveller’s or stranger’s sensibility; his eye seems to seek out and isolate the strange and the familiar, without ever quite owning the places or the objects he describes. What makes his work unusual is that Woods overcomes the problems of writing about an unfamiliar place by placing himself nowhere, adrift, and almost weightless. This is a contemplative poetry lost in a daydream and a pure pleasure to read.