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Profit and Loss

by Leontia Flynn

eBooks of the Month Poetry

Profit and Loss Synopsis

Shortlisted for the T S Eliot Prize for Poetry 2011.

Celebrated as an unusually original poet - nervy, refreshing, deceptively simple - Leontia Flynn has quickly developed into a writer of assured technical complexity and a startling acuity of perception. In her third collection, Flynn examines and dismantles a fugitive life. The first sequence moves through a series of rooms, reflecting on aspects of the author's personal and family history. Using the idea of the haunted house or the house with a sealed-off room, and Gothic tropes of madness, doubles, revenants and religious brooding, the poems consider ideas of inheritance and legacy. The second section comprises a magnificent long poem written in the months leading up to the banking crisis and presidential election of October 2008. Taking as its occasion a flat-clearing, it assumes a more public voice (inspired partly by Auden's Letter to Lord Byron ), and reflects on aspects of the rapid social and technological change of the last decade. An extraordinarily moving reflection on mutability and mortality prompted by the spring-cleaning of a life's detritus, Letter to Friends evolves from a private reliquary to a public obsequy. Its collapse back into private griefs, including the poet's father's decline into Alzheimer's disease, is pursued in the third section of the book. Here the theme of a tallying of private and public balance sheets, of different kinds of profit and loss, widens to include poems of motherhood and marriage, the possibilities of hope and repair.

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9780224093439
Publication date: 01/09/2011
Publisher: Jonathan Cape Ltd an imprint of Vintage
Format: Paperback

Book Information

ISBN: 9780224093439
Publication date: 1st September 2011
Author: Leontia Flynn
Publisher: Jonathan Cape Ltd an imprint of Vintage
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 80 pages
Genres: eBook Favourites, Poetry,
Categories: Poetry by individual poets,

About Leontia Flynn

Leontia Flynn was born in 1974 and lives in Belfast. Her first book, These Days, won the 2004 Forward Prize for Best First Collection. Her second, Drives, was awarded the 2008 Rooney Prize for Irish Literature. She is currently post-doctoral research fellow at the Seamus Heaney Centre for Poetry at Queen's University.

More About Leontia Flynn

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