Book Cover: Immortal Sins
Editions:Paperback: € 7.00
ISBN: 1 897648 17 0
Pages: 149

Published by Salmon Poetry in Ireland, this is Anne Le Marquand Hartigan's fourth published book of poetry. It's a substantial collection (149 pages) and contains the full text of Anne's poem La Corbiere, which was adapted for the stage at the Dublin Theatre Festival.

"Immortal Sins covers a wide variety of themes: birth, death, including the pleasures and trials of love. It includes the long poem La Corbiere; which I performed as a solo theatre piece in the Samuel Beckett Theatre in Dublin. It was also performed in the Dublin Theatre Festival with a cast of six." Anne Le M Hartigan

"The latest collection of poems by Anne Hartigan brings us daringly through the minefield avoided by less courageous writers who see Cliche written wherever Love appears. These poems are in the main about love, the fury, the pain, the passion, and the loss that goes with it. Anne Hartigan's voice is distinctive. She speaks as a lover who has borne children and has seen their children born. In this collection she celebrates sensuousness, lusty, treacherous, messy and inescapably human. Like the best poets, she brings us to new awareness with many unexpected images, "birds slicing the air". These are skilful and honest poems. They have their own particular music and move like the feet of a dancer, weaving in and out her themes of love failed, denied, lost, achieved. Few contemporary poets handle the themes of love and loss with such vigour and truthfulness."  Maeve Kelly

 

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Excerpt:
In That Garden

In that garden once she took down the Apple

Casually because she wanted to know, and then

There was all that fuss, Adam going

Bananas saying that she'd tipped the apple cart

And God;

Oh God was a pain getting all huffed up about

His tree and the serpent splitting its sides

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Under the bushes laughing.

To save face after all night discussions behind

Closed gates they decided on a lockout. Adam

Raging that he was implicated because of the odd

Bite he took in case she knew more than he did;

She did of course, and now she knew it made no
Difference which side of the gates of paradise

They were; until God took a good look at himself

And saw his own womb, his own breast, and not only

His staff of righteousness.

 

The Big Grieving

The honesty of touch skin asks for,
peeling off the outer, unnessary layers,
wool, cotton, nylon, polyester
or smelly socks.

(skin,     white as an almond
delicate,       pure water)

She needs to say, I love you,
because, simply, on this floor
on this rough blanket, under
this floating duvet, she does.

He says, Sssh, when she has tears,
touches her eyes, but its good to weep;
bodies become so simple by removing
wool, cotton, nylon, polyester,

then the big grieving of the world
slips from them, down through
the floorboards, washed through
the drains of the earth

So I leave nothing with you, my beloved 

No Hair of my head
No book on the shelf
No bra on the floor
No stockings.
                     No pen on the table
                     Not a button from my blouse,
                     No toothbrush
                     No flannel
                     No towel
                     damp in a heap,  No
Night dress, not
A lipstick
An eyeliner
No face cream  No

the was no breath of me,
Not a tissue
Not a mark
Not a comb
Not an earring
No car keys
No map
No - not a footprint,a 
wheelprint?  Can you see it?
There in the shadows, in
The gravel             
                   I dropped nothing
                   I left nothing
                   Not a wave in the air

But beloved
press close in the sheets
where my body lay there
where my skin sank there
where my flesh warmed there,
that dip there,
that ruckle there,
                   breath, deepdeep, did I
                   leave scent of me ? 

To write what is not Word

that is quiet
that is still
that moves not
that fears not
that troubles not
stiller than still water
                          behold this is silence
the stillness of pine needles
the stillnes of bark
the stillnes of stone
that is without sound
that is without voice
that is without need
                           behold this is silence
and full.
Stillness of bone
stillness of darkness
warm without terror
empty of thought
full of this space
airy, light, whisper,
no footfall on leaves
no footfall on gravel
no knock on the door


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