From the early poem â€˜Madrid Through The Eyes of a Strangerâ€™, first published in the bilingual collection Wine and Hope/Vino y Esperanza (1999), to the epic title poemâ€™ Madridâ€™ in this present collection, John Liddy returns to his adopted home, no longer a stranger but seasoned in its idiosyncrasies. It is as though he has come full circle. But he moves further afield to take in Galicia, Asturias, Atapuerca and the Ireland he has never stopped writing about.
Madrid and Other Poems takes the reader beyond place and country into the heart of modern living with its political and social upheavals. The tribute poem to poets past and present and the questioning, religious-social poem are also to be found in this, his eleventh collection.
The book is Liddyâ€™s unrelentless search for whatever truths may be found in the writing of poems. He is concerned with what the eye observes and how thoughts reveal or unfold. He is very attuned to what the American poet Stanley Kunitz wrote in Reflections to his Collected Poems: I like to think that it is the poetâ€™s love of particulars, the things of this world, that leads him to universals. Those, according to Liddy, are the identifiable traits in this book.