'I attended a wonderful seminar run by Eavan Boland whose poetry I was teaching to my sixth form a couple of weeks ago. She spoke of the creation and use of image in poetry and contended strongly that, like the appendix in the human body, the simile is now redundant. Using poems by Wallace Stevens, Sylvia Plath, Adrienne Rich and her own 'Black Lace Fan', she examined the power of metaphor as an organic part of the poem. We were encouraged to give our views: I argued with her about the compass simile in Donne's 'A Valediction : forbidding mourning', which I love and she doesn't.
At a reception afterwards I spoke to her for a while and found her very engaging. She is a wonderful teacher and the seminar was exciting and stimulating. The Poetry School is at www.poetryschool.com.'
There are useful links to Boland, one of the Leaving Certificate poets, on the Norton Poets site, and an interview in Caffeine Destiny here. One of the prescribed poems on our course is the beautiful 'The Pomegranate', here. Shortly available in the Library : the newly published Eavan Boland Sourcebook.