paper 1-901233-32-4 The White Battlefield Of Silence ($19.95; paper $12.95; Oct. 11; 96 pp.; 1-901233-32-2; paper 1-901233-32-4) is a first collection by a young Irish poet that has far more depth and texture than the typical American debut but still it suffers from the same heaviness the young are prone to across the globe. History and meaning seem to be McCabe's stock-in-trade, and he's not beneath finding inspiration in linguistics—nor above dedicating the ensuing work (—Etymology—) to Drue Heinz! In fact, most of the volume seems to be an homage to somebody or other, from —Percy Place (for Thomas Kinsella)— to —Fear and Misery in the Third Reich (after Brecht).— McCabe has a good sense of place and uses it to best advantage in many pieces (—Coole Park and Ballylee, 1995,— for example, or —Clare Island Revisited—), but the volume as a whole has a sense of overbearing, overeager seriousness to it.
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