How Can Landlocked Countries Give Birth To Poets?

That is the question that came to mind as Wife-unit and I drove around West Cork over Paddy’s Day weekend.

This was the bridge at Union Hall, in the midst of gale force winds on Patrick’s Day. Kinsale out to Clon and up to Bantry must be the most beautiful miles in Europe. It might seem shallow of me to tell you that such beauty demands belief in God. Of course, these natural formations could have just occurred through direction-less development but the reaction that it illicits in us can’t be explained that way. It was an almost transcendental experience for me.

Wife-unit, being the genius that she is, reminded me that Monaghan is landlocked. Yet Monaghan gave rise to the 3rd K and another poet. But he answers my question. Poets come from landlocked countries (and counties) out of a desire for revenge at their bland, drama-less setting. Exhibit A from the bitter landlocked Patrick Kavanagh’s “Stony Grey Soil”:

O stony grey soil of Monaghan
The laugh from my love you thieved;
You took the gay child of my passion
And gave me your clod-conceived.

Either Babette has created a new website or Babette is being stalked in a Single White Female way. It is highly unlikely that Babette could be stalked by someone as clever and as articulate as she is so you should just follow my hyperactive example and add Something Babette Something to your bookmarks or your RSS reader. I’ve been using Google Reader for the last week or so by the way and it rocks.

It is simply part of our collective knowledge that opposition to the trends of youth tend to be met with vocal opposition from the powers-that-be. We vaguely understand that The Man hated rock music or that The Man is against the Emerging Church but here is a classic example (via the always fascinating Peter Leithart) of The Man (circa July 16 1816) opposing The Waltz:

It is quite sufficient to cast one’s eyes on the voluptuous intertwining of the limbs, and close compressure of the bodies, in this dance, to see that it is far indeed removed from the modest reserve which has hitherto been considered distinctive of English females. So long as this obscene display was confined to prostitutes and adulteresses, we did not think it deserving of notice, but now that it is attempted to be forced on the respectable classes of society by the evil example of their superiors, we feel it a duty to warn every parent against exposing his daughter to so fatal a contagion.

Alister McGrath is coming to Maynooth to talk about how science has not disproven God on April 21st. (More, so very much more about that in the coming weeks). But it turns out that finally Richard Dawkins has agreed to debate him. It will take place tomorrow at the Oxford Literary Festival. Sadly, the tickets are sold out so I am not planning a last-minute dash via Ryanair.

The tone of this article on the minimum security prisons of Austria suggests to me it could only ever be written by an American. Scott McKnight is a superb theologian and for you Christians out there, this is a fine article on the streams within the Emerging Church. Much better than the now infamous, unintentionally hilarious, old codger on You Tube. Finally, remember Heaven’s Gate? Its now almost ten years since those crazy guys went to heaven. Its about time you read an interview with the sole survivor, right? Fecking gnostics. It starts with piece-of-crap airport fiction and it ends up with a bunch of maniacs taking an express train to the stars.

Your Correspondent, He’s the only cabbage around here

4 Responses to “How Can Landlocked Countries Give Birth To Poets?”

  1. Peebles says:

    That’s fantastic that Dawkins and McGrath will finally meet, especially as McGrath ended up on the cutting room floor of Dawkins’s documentary/rant.

    My only reservation is that McGrath is quickly becoming defined as the Man who Bashes Dawkins, and he is a much richer thinker, theologian and writer to be defined as a War Room rapid-response machine gunner.

    I’m glad he’s risen to the challenge, but one of his great themes had been that the Reformation lost its energy, conviction and excitement when it got pushed into doing a defensive dance by the Enlightenment. It’d be woefully ironic if the same fate beset McGrath because of Dawkins’s clever Sixth Former objections to theism.

    Christian Theology: An Introduction is a magnificent work of scholarship you will devour as if each page was soaked in pistachio essence. More of that please, Al!

  2. zoomtard says:

    I see where the fear would come from and its a great insight to apply generally across Christianland. But our boy Ally is good in spite of any reputation he might develop. Remember that this guy has published the most significant contribution to the science/theology debate in decades and will present his new proposal for natural theology this Autumn. Alongside this he has set up a new apologetics centre in Oxford, has kept pace with his biographies and his easy-to-access Christian life books and is the Principal of a premier Anglican training institute.

    After he comes to us in April, I’ll be happy if he gave up kicking Dawkins around the intellectual boxing ring! 🙂

  3. Greymalkin says:

    As bad as this sounds,i’m going to have to disagree with Zoomtard.West Cork is beautiful, but it doesn’t compare to \meath.where I was a few weeks ago.It’s got beautiful stone walls, CRANNOGS!, and of course,crazy things like tara and Lough Crew.p.s. Roddy Woomble is the beast.Catch you soon!

  4. zoomtard says:

    Meath? Better than West Cork? You crazy joker!