Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin Full Notes and Sample Answer

“Ní Chuilleanáin’s demanding subject matter and formidable style can prove challenging.”

Discuss this statement, supporting your answer with reference to the poetry of Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin on your course. 

Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin leaving cert notes sample essays

"When you look out across the fields..." - To Niall Woods and Xenya Ostrovskaia, married in Dublin on 9 September 2009
While Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin’s poetry initially seemed rather effortless in terms of style and universal in terms of subject matter, I have come to realise that it’s hiding many layers of meaning. Each of her themes seems to represent a cliff-edge between one feeling and another, between the present and the past and between this world and the afterlife. Her interpretation of love, family, loss and memory are all united by the concept of transition and transcendence, creating a kind of a meta-theme that traverses throughout her writing. Moreover, Ní Chuilleanáin considers both sides of every story making poetry philosophically subtle rather than being driven by unchallenged emotion. In terms of her style, the poet playfully engages with folklore and mythology only to reveal deeper layers of the story. Her poems remind me of films that cut from one time and place to another with no warning, adding a layer of unexpected complexity. All the same, her intellectually demanding poetry is a pleasure to decipher and her effortless style is a treasure chest of delightful riddles.

While you're here find out the main points about Ní Chuilleanáin:

For the full sample answer as well as a comprehensive overview of how to approach this and any other such essay, check out our brand new download covering every one of Ní Chuilleanáin’s poems on the course: Lucina Schynning in Silence of the Nicht, The Second Voyage, Deaths and Engines, Street, Fireman’s Lift, All for You, Following, Kilcash, Translation, The Bend in the Road, On Lacking the Killer Instinct, To Niall Woods and Xenya Ostrovskaia, married in Dublin on 9 September 2009.

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