Retired Consul Publishes Collection of Poetry
Retired consul Martin Lahiff has published several nonfiction books including "His Way" (1996), "To Build a Cross" (1997), "Two Histories" (1998), the autobiographical "Rancho Minovi" (2001), and "Cien Poemas" (2003). After a decade of silence, Lahiff returns to publish his book, "The Other Side," and his latest anthology of handpicked poems grouped into four phases of his life, titled "IONA."
According to its brief introduction, Lahiff's new poetry collection is composed of four parts, each roughly matching a changing scene in the author-poet's long life, perhaps in an effort to achieve a sort of reader sympathy for the deficiencies and excesses that show in poetic outbursts owing to flaming youth, midlife crises, and aged omniscience.
Part I, titled "Iona," after a small island off the coast of Scotland, marks Lahiff's college years when his discovery of immortal poets and poetry fueled his passion for writing. Part II captures his return to poetry after a long hiatus following "Iona." Part III finds him in the bureaucratic doldrums, while a final Part IV poetically chronicles the events that led him to publish his compelling works of nonfiction, following an unpoetic surgery.
A treasure trove of about six dozen poems spanning six decades, "IONA" is a remarkable literary collection that traces one man's lifelong journey through poignant poetry. Lahiff denies our enthusiastic claim that his work has made a dent in the universe, saying the dent happened when he failed to signal on the road to Coatepec. He says his contribution to humanity is limited to those who buy his book.