While Kavanagh himself was somewhat unsentimental about Irish life and his work, here we present some reflections on the character of Kavanagh and the contribution he made.
Kavanagh is presented here as a brother, a poet, a wordsmith, and a genius. While he was an unpredictable and often disgruntled character, the honesty that is evident in his self-portrait is the characteristic that is admired by so many.
In an article entitled ‘Image of a Poet’ published in the RTV Guide, David Hanley writes of Kavanagh,
...he is at all times and on every subject eminently quotable. But he doesn’t seek so-called serious conversation. He doesn’t want to answer serious questions. He doesn’t make serious statements. He doesn’t want to be serious. Kavanagh wants to be happy. Happiness is everything, and is more than anything else worth striving for. The essential thing is to learn quickly to compromise with life. And this Kavanagh is only now beginning to do.
(RTV Guide, Vol.2, No.149, October 9, 1964, p.5)
Who better to describe Patrick Kavanagh than the poet himself? There are also his brother Peter, his publisher Tim O’Keeffe, and fellow poets Seamus Heaney and Brendan Kennelly.
In his debut television appearance, Kavanagh reflects on the self.
Tim O'Keeffe explains his part in having 'Collected Poems' by Patrick Kavanagh published while working for McGibbon & Kee in London
Seamus Heaney describes how he first came to read Kavanagh and how Kavanagh's work taught him "that nothing is trivial", and that the ordinary or common place is as important as the largest theme.
Talking to Professor Augustine Kavanagh, Dr. Peter Kavanagh talks about his relationship with his brother and his realisation that Patrick was a genius.
Brendan Kennelly talks about his great love for Patrick Kavanagh as a person and as a poet.
A Patrick Kavanagh column for the RTÉ Guide which is devoted entirely to the subject of himself.