Poetry: Shaun Traynor

Today ICC Digital brings you a grippingly beautiful poetry reading from the Derry born poet and children’s author Shaun Traynor.  For those of you who were part of the vibrant Irish literary scene in London during the past three decades, you may have come across Shaun and you may even have attended some of his lively poetry readings.

Shaun Traynor has published five collections of poems, ‘Shakespeare’s Last Drink’, ‘The Hardening Ground’, ‘Images In Winter’, ‘Stormont’ and  ‘Van Gough In Brixton.’ His acclaimed children’s novels include ‘Hugo O Huge, The Children’s Giant’, ‘The Giants Olympics’, ‘The Lost City Of Belfast’ and ‘A Little Man in England’. Shaun has also published several poetry books for children and he is editor of ‘The Poolbeg Book of Irish Poetry for Children’.  

Shaun’s work has drawn much praise from many of the greats in the literary scene, including the critics Enda Longley and Terry Eagleton and the poets John Montague, Desmond O’Grady and Ted Hughes. Here is what some of them have to say about Sean’s work:

“In this his first collection Shaun Traynor takes his place amongst his peers from the the North of Ireland and the South. His dramatic Meditations on the Suspension of Stormont deserves its place in the canon”.

(Desmond O’Grady, Hibernia Review of Books)

“His poetry is open, direct, unedged, his feelings immediately and clearly rendered, his dictions and rhythms simple to a point of an attractive naiveté.”

(Terry Eagleton, The Tablet)

“Shaun Traynor’s new book is a delight, the writing is fresh and exact, he is in touch with the old spring, the old jauntiness of language, its resilience, its lasting singing power. His poetry is an act of faith, his rhythms a gift of grace. Traynor takes chances, there is a sense of risk in his poetry, a sense that this business of writing poetry actually matters”.

(Robert Welch, Literary Review)

Never afraid of controversy, in 2016, in response to Brexit, Shaun announced in the Irish Times that he was turning his back on his Irish Protestant roots to become an Irish National.

If you would like to read some of Shaun’s work visit www.shauntraynor.co.uk