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Maurice Riordan, Shoulder Tap – review

Maurice Riordan’s subtly wrought Shoulder Tap draws beauty and wide imaginative reach as much from what it doesn’t say as from what it does. Its very quietness makes faint inflections and shifts of tone seem rich with implication. And a tendency to self-effacement, even when ostensibly talking about himself, seems to reflect the poet’s imaginative receptiveness. His ‘I’ becomes a medium of perception rather than a centre of attention, fading into things he sees or remembers. These things may be concrete experiences, or hauntings by other writers or singers. Such hauntings are sometimes explicit and extended, like a fine translation … Continue Reading