Patrick Kavanagh believed that following his illness in 1955 he was reborn as a poet. He explains how he had a revelation while lying on the banks of the canal and his belief that little he wrote before was poetry.
- Title Patrick Kavanagh
- 1st Broadcast 30/10/1962
- ContributorJim FitzGerald (Director)
Patrick Kavanagh (Writer/Presenter)
- Clip Duration 00:03:27
- Material Type Video
- Series title Self Portrait
- Clip title "A Poet Is Born Not Made"
- Extended description
Quoting from his own poetry Kavanagh offers his explanation of what makes a poet.
"...And so it was on the banks of the Grand Canal between Baggot and Leeson Street Bridges in the warm summer of 1955, I lay and watched the green waters of the canal. I had just come out of hospital:
'Leafy-with-love banks and the green waters of the canal
Pouring redemption for me, that I do
The will of God, will wallow in the habitual, the banal,
Grow with nature again as before I grew.'
And so, in this moment of great bearing, I became a poet..."
This episode of 'Self Portrait' featuring Patrick Kavanagh was broadcast on 30 October 1962.
The 'Self Portrait' series profiled writers, poets, actors and dramatists. Portraits in the series included Sylvia Beach, John B. Keane, Kate O'Brien, Louise Gavan Duffy, Sir Tyrone Guthrie, Harry O'Donovan and Sam Thompson.
'Self-Portrait' was a series of intimate studio monologues with distinguished Irish men and women. It provided a unique opportunity to hear and see significant individuals presenting themselves in their own words and voices enriching their presentations with personal stories and examples of their work.
Kavanagh's script for this 'Self-Portrait' programme was later published by The Dolmen Press in 1964 © Patrick Kavanagh.
In 2004 to honour the centenary of Patrick Kavanagh's birth, RTE Libraries and Archives remastered this Self-Portrait programme. Later that year the programme was repackaged and rebroadcast 'The View Presents...' Tx 29 November 2004.
Extracts of Patrick Kavanagh's writings are published by kind permission of the Patrick and Katherine Kavanagh Trust.
- Local keywords Patrick Kavanagh, Poet, Poetry, Self-Portrait
- Geographical coverage Ireland
- Topic Arts and Culture
- Publisher Broadcaster RTÉ
- First broadcast channel RTÉ
- Production year 1962
- Country of production Ireland
- Original identifier P35/00063
- IPR restrictions Rights Reserved - Free Access
- Rights terms and conditions
Copyright RTÉ. This material may not be replicated in any form or manner without the prior express permission of RTÉ. Any form of reproduction in print, television, video, multimedia, web site or other electronic media or any form of dissemination for commercial or non-commercial use must be licensed by the RTÉ Archives.
If you wish to licence video or audio clips, still images or text, or would like further guidance please contact us.
RTÉ Archives are committed to respecting the copyright of others and have attempted to source and credit the copyright owners of all material used here. RTÉ would like to hear from any copyright owners who are not properly identified here so that the necessary corrections can be made. If you feel your copyright has not been respected please contact us.
- Item type part/extract
- Item colour Black and White
- Item sound Mono
- Aspect ratio 4:3
- Language used English (eng)
- Original language English (eng)