In thirty-four sonnets Ciaran Carson animates the romantic agony of three of Europe’s great nineteenth-century poets with characteristic humour, argot and brilliant rhymes. Their formal patterns harness the forward rush of his thought and language. His ‘correspondences’ in The Alexandrine Plan show these poets’ relevance to late twentieth-century Ireland.
‘[A] reader with even a smattering of French might appreciate how thoroughly Carson both translates – that is, carries across – and then transplants in an altogether different soil and climate the richness of those originals.’ — Thomas O’Grady, Boston Review
A marvelous work of art, part verse, part prose, part haiku, part beautifully controlled long, loose, lines. It is about Belfast past and present and is full of surprises, savage and witty, human and extravagant. His voice is truly original, both intelligent and passionate. — S. Byatt, The Sunday Times Books of the Year