Wexford People

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Launch of poetry book based on life of Van Gogh

The book 'The Boundless and Miraculous - Found poems from the letters of Vincent Van Gogh' by Larry Stapleton was launched at a well-attended event in Wexford Library.

Executive librarian Lorraine Marrey introduced the guest speaker, poet and novelist Kerry Hardie, who said: 'The letters themselves are messages in bottles that float into your vision and leave you right in the midst of magic.

'Larry has uncorked the bottles, extracted the messages and presented us with words condensed and transformed into poems,' said Ms Hardie, a distinguished writer and member of Aosdána.

'There is also the strange and utterly compelling addition of so many of the paintings, all beautifully produced and lying as quietly beside the poems as the 'utter repose' state Van Gogh writes of when describing the famous study of a bedroom'.

Ms Hardie said Larry and his readers are fortunate that Liffey Press took a risk on the book, and fortunate also in the now unseen presence of the late art promoter and gallery owner Denis Collins.

Denis organised the first poetry workshop Larry ever attended and did much to promote and encourage poets, painters and writers in the south east.

A recent review of the book by John O'Sullivan in the Sunday Times said the poet's 'accessible and illuminating collection of sonnets works well as a series of glimpses into the consciousness of a great artist; the diary of a soul. It captures the voice of a man whose life was a constant struggle but who maintained good grace to the end'.

Wexford People