A Shed for Wood
|Daniel Thomas Moran|
Page Count: 108
Publication Date: Wednesday, November 20, 2013
About this Book
Moran’s is a distinctive American voice which deserves an attentive hearing.
Elizabeth Heywood (Acumen Magazine)
Moran’s poems seem so natural, uncontrived, like an afterthought that suddenly prevails.
Profound and intelligible poetry. The cosmic grounded in the mundane. Pointedly unpretentious and extraordinarily real.
Daniel Thomas Moran is a poet whose American sinews were birthed by Irish forebears, and who arrives as a poet from an unlikely place. Trained as a scientist and ultimately as a Doctor of Dental Surgery he writes, not from pedagogy, but from his own nature; a sense of wonder at and worship for, the assorted reflections of existence. It is here, in his seventh collection, A Shed for Wood, that he comes home again, to Ireland, with all his accounts of life in the new world. His poems are a travelogue of oddly varied subjects and points of view; faces and places where he engages and acclaims the diverting particulars of living. He does it with poignancy and with wit, with tenderness and a peculiar perspective, and with a proud and well-earned American-Irish breed of wisdom.
Daniel Thomas Moran, born in New York City in 1957, is the author of six volumes of poetry, the most recent of which, Looking for the Uncertain Past, was published by Poetry Salzburg at The University of Salzburg in 2006. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology from Stony Brook University (1979) and a Doctorate in Dental Surgery from Howard University (1983). He has read widely throughout New York City and Long Island and has done readings in Ireland, Italy, Austria, Great Britain, at The Library of Congress, and at The United Nations. He was Poet Laureate of Suffolk County, New York, from 2005 to 2007.
His work has appeared in such prestigious journals as Confrontation, The Recorder, Nassau Review, Oxford, Hawaii Pacific Review, Commonweal, Parnassus, Opium, Istanbul Literature Review, Pedestal, Rattapallax, LUNGFULL, Poetry Salzburg Review, The New York Times, The Journal of The American Medical Association, and The Norton Critical Anthology on Darwin. From 1997-2005 he served as Vice-President of The Walt Whitman Birthplace Association in West Hills, New York where he instituted The Long Island School of Poetry Reading Series and has been Literary Correspondent to Long Island Public Radio where he hosted The Long Island Radio Magazine.
His work has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize on ten occasions. He was profiled on New York Public Television’s Setting the Stage, and on The Poet and The Poem from The Library of Congress hosted by Grace Cavalieri. He was profiled in the 2009 edition of Poet’s Market. He is a participating writer to The Password Project, an international collaboration between visual artists and writers based in Austria.
In 2005 he was appointed Poet Laureate by The Legislature of Suffolk County, New York, the birthplace of Walt Whitman.
His work has been translated into German, Spanish, Romanian, Chinese and Italian. He has been listed in Who’s Who in America since 2000. He is a member of PEN American and has been ordained a Celebrant by The American Humanist Association. He edited The Light of City and Sea, An Anthology of Suffolk County Poetry 2006 (Street Press). His collected papers are being archived by The Frank Melville Library at Stony Brook University in New York. In 2006 he was inducted into The Massapequa High Schools Hall of Fame. He is a founding member of Irish American Writers and Artists, Inc. and a member of The Association of Literary Critics, Scholars and Writers. He is the father of Lindsay, Ashley and Gregory. From 2009 to 2013 he was Clinical Assistant Professor of General Dentistry at Boston University’s School of Dental Medicine where he delivered the 2011 Commencement Address, and twice received The Outstanding Clinical Faculty Award from his students. He and his wife Karen live on the Warner River in Webster, New Hampshire.
Some Kind of Sonnet for a Mayfly
for Michael Arcieri
If it be true what learned people say,
The Mayfly lives for but a day.
I’ll not shed even the tiniest tear,
Or wish he’d make it one more year.
Instead I would concentrate on just how grand,
To live without next week’s demand.
And among the simple Mayfly facts is,
He never once has to file his taxes.
Or contemplate the waning moon,
Or anticipate any time but soon.
Never repay but only borrow,
Or check the weather for tomorrow.
It might be luxury, if I may be bold,
To be unconcerned about growing old.
No time for beddy-by, nor alarms to be set,
No time for longing or for regret.
Not to mention that on his day in May,
He might decide to alight or just fly away.
Another thing any Mayfly knows,
He won’t need to shop for winter clothes.
Never wondering while watching the setting sun,
Why living seems over before it’s begun.
The Mayfly is the only who can truly say,
That the Mayfly has so truly had his day.
At eight in the morn his youth would flower,
Old age a twenty-fifth or twenty-sixth hour.
Never needing to strain his brain to remember,
Where he was on the twenty-fourth of September.
Oh Mayfly how strangely fortunate,
Is the lifetime brief and immediate.
Mayfly whose life is so fleetly fleeting,
Might seem so surely worth repeating.
It is not so different, really.
There are oaks and wildflowers,
and stones in our garden.
In the house where we sleep,
there is a case of books,
and they are our books.
The sunlight is most
beautiful in the early morning
just before the world gets busy.
There is work to be done
during each of our days, as well.
Work which makes us feel
tired and contented.
There is also water.
Not empty and still,
but thin and silken over
and amidst the big rocks.
All the long day and night
It makes a sound like wind.
It travels while our travels
have ended, Here.
There is a stately heron, who
comes to fish in the noon.
Yesterday I saw the hummingbird,
only minutes after I had reached
to hang his red feeder.
I was pleased at his arrival.
I spent a small time wondering,
how he knew where to find us,
just as he had done in
all those green summers,
for Christopher Hitchens
I cannot give
Even at the
risk of my
But I have faith
that it would
To endorse any
god who’d make
a bone that
Copyright © Daniel T. Moran 2013