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To return to oneself in a state of wonder and uncertainty that characterizes the human condition

If you reach the last pages of this book, you have entered a particular realm that explores central themes of literature - love, life, and death. Through the constant presence of the poet and their "self" that we encounter throughout the poems, we access two dichotomous scales - personal daily life and its relationship with the world - articulated between a sarcastic and philosophical cynicism that flows like a river.

Although, in colloquial language, the term "cynicism" is often used to describe disdainful attitudes and, therefore, associated with a negative view of humanity and a lack of trust in others' motivations, philosophical cynicism, rooted in the philosophical school founded by Diogenes of Sinope in ancient Greece, defends the pursuit of living in accordance with nature, questioning social conventions and established norms in search of a more authentic and truthful life.

Colm Kiernan's poetry allows us to rediscover the justice of this philosophical cynicism, combined with sarcasm and an honest and critical observation of the world. It is no coincidence that the poems are permeated with interrogations, directed both at the reader and at the poet themselves. It is also noteworthy that a romantic language emerges from everyday places, creating a circular linguistic movement, from the emotional self to the world, to return to oneself in a state of wonder and uncertainty that characterizes the human condition.

In such a way, Colm Kiernan's poetry indicates a simultaneously raw and humanistic gaze, simultaneously romantic and nihilistic, sensual and disillusioned, which cannot be characterized or packaged into a single literary trend. It is rather a quest that reveals itself between hyper-realism and self-reflection, allowing the reader to embark on a journey that becomes their own.

- Inês Lampreia

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