Paul Durcan Biography
(1944– ), Teresa's Bar, Jesus, Break His Fall, Jumping the Train Tracks with Angela
Irish poet, born in Dublin, educated at University College, Cork. His numerous collections of poetry have included Teresa's Bar (1976), Jesus, Break His Fall (1982), Jumping the Train Tracks with Angela (1983), The Berlin Wall Café (1985), Going Home to Russia (1987), Jesus and Angela (1988), and Daddy, Daddy (1990). The lavishly produced In the Land of Punt (1988) is a collaboration between Durcan and the noted Irish artist Gene Lambers. Durcan's poetry is highly idiosyncratic in its combination of ‘an open Romanticism rare in contemporary poetry’ (Edna Longley, introduction to The Selected Paul Durcan, 1982) with trenchantly satirical social commentaries, often employing bizarrely surreal narrative strategies. The accessibility and humour of his work, together with his striking vocal delivery, have made his readings widely popular. Crazy About Women (1991) and Give Me Your Hand (1994) are collections displaying Durcan's poetic responses to paintings in National Galleries of Ireland and Britain; new and selected poems appeared in A Snail in My Prime (1993).