NYS Writers Institute, March 14, 2002
"His readings are famous." - James Simmons, The Spectator
"The dislocated, conversational vernacular of his zany verse-narratives made him an excellent performer of his own work, associating him with performance poets such as Allen Ginsberg and the Liverpool Beat poets rather than the mainstream." - Bernard O'Donaghue, Times Literary Supplement
"Paul Durcan's Ireland is one we inhabit. At times he is ready to celebrate the bizarre and the ordinary; at other times he is full of a surreal rage against both order and disorder." - Colm Toibin, Times Literary Supplement
"One of the most original and undaunted imaginations at work." - Seamus Heaney
In his most recent collection, Cries of an Irish Caveman (2001), Durcan uses his powers of lyricism and wit to address the themes of love and loss, life and death. In four distinct story-like sections, Durcan relives past relationships and loves, revisits the people, places, and mysteries of his beloved Ireland, meditates on his feelings regarding his daughter's marriage, and in the fourth, widely acclaimed section, recognized by some as his most daring work to date, Durcan bears in its full complexity the brutal, beautiful tale of his own 20th century romance. Said Roger McGough of the Sunday Tribune, "For him poetry is story-telling...Paul Durcan's poetry sings."
His previous works include, Greetings of Our Friends from Brazil (1999), A Snail in My Prime: New and Selected Poems (1995), Daddy, Daddy (1990), which won the Whitbread Poetry Prize, The Berlin Wall Cafe (1985), which was selected the Poetry Book Society Choice and regarded by many as his most important work, The Selected Paul Durcan (1982), and Endsville (1967), among others.
For additional information, contact the Writers Institute at 518-442-5620 or online at http://www.albany.edu/writers-inst.