Algo Poetry-Behind the Lines

The (He)art of Golden Repair

Poem number 38* from Unreconciled Doors is “Kintsugi”.

I will admit that I had never seen that word until I came across an article in an Irish newspaper in early 2021 ,about an upcoming exhibition by an Irish artist

This exhibition! by Kilkenny born artist Patrick O’ Reilly stuck in my head, as did the extraordinary heart that he had created, which is at the heart of today’s backdrop.

Kintsugi, it turns out, is the Japanese art of “golden repair”.

Specifically the act of putting broken things back together, with the stitches becoming the stars, the broken areas mended with precious metals.

This of course, I had to write about, and that’s what today’s Behind The Lines is all about-

“The broken and cold now stitched up with gold”

The work came very quickly with no editing, and I guess ,it is my attempt at an “ekphrastic” piece of poetry (Yes, I didn’t know that term either until a couple of years ago).

Though not doing the beautiful fragility of the work of art justice, maybe the image I based this work on was more the symbolic romantic image that we have of the human heart and how fragile it actually is.

I think, definitely ,I had a sense at the time that, yes, you could repair a broken heart but that it was a continual act. A less golden repair and more of a recurring, ritualistic repair, where you could feel the cracks, and maybe everyone else could see them, but you carried on as if it was brand new:-

“Imperfect repair of the easily shattered”

*38-Sidenote-I was on a brilliant Irish Writer’s Centre course recently and was introduced to the poem “38” by Layla Long Soldier. Anyone interested in American History should Check it out, it’s incredible



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