Eavan Boland

Rookie (1944 / Dublin)

Outside History - Poem by Eavan Boland

These are outsiders, always. These stars—
these iron inklings of an Irish January,
whose light happened
thousands of years before
our pain did; they are, they have always been
outside history.
They keep their distance. Under them remains
a place where you found
you were human, and
a landscape in which you know you are mortal.
And a time to choose between them.
I have chosen:
out of myth in history I move to be
part of that ordeal
who darkness is
only now reaching me from those fields,
those rivers, those roads clotted as
firmaments with the dead.
How slowly they die
as we kneel beside them, whisper in their ear.
And we are too late. We are always too late.

Topic(s) of this poem: history


Comments about Outside History by Eavan Boland

  • (9/9/2016 9:22:00 AM)


    Not too sure what she is trying to tell us in this one. (Report) Reply

    Agatha Eliza Agatha Eliza (3/31/2017 3:07:00 AM)

    The poem is about the history of the Irish women, who have been oppressed and suffered in silence, who were excluded from society or ostracised due to various reasons, who were supposed to be contained in an alien and rigid pattern created by others, who were regarded as a muse rather than the poet/creator/the self, and have their identity linked to concepts such the landscape, the nation, the essence of Irishness, and so on. Eavan Boland's poetry is important and empowering, because it reunites all these lost and silenced voices of all the women who suffered, so they can break through the barriers of myths and be restored to their well deserved place in history.

    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
Read all 2 comments »


Poem Submitted: Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Poem Edited: Tuesday, March 17, 2015


[Report Error]