The Seven Streams: An Irish Cycle
by David Whyte
59 poems ~ 167 pages
Price: $20.00
Publisher: Many Rivers Press
ISBN #: 978-1-932887-57-0
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The poetry in The Seven Streams spans many decades of the author’s life, a life conceived on Irish soil but birthed on another; infused with his mother’s longing, separation from home, and the braided griefs of exile and homecoming. True to the places and people we meet along the way, the line between the everyday and the numinous can blur, crossing from one to the other and back again like the best conversations in a long friendship, without need for apology or explanation. As we follow the pathways these poems create, into often hidden corners of Ireland, with its long, re-imagined inheritance and resilient people, we discover we are also following a singular human life, through its intuitions, revelations and the mercies of forgiveness.


The Seven Streams, is my third spiritual journey through the paths of enlightenment offered by David Whyte. Previous journeys: David Whyte, Essentials (2019), and Consolations: The Solace Nourishment, and Underlying Meaning of Everyday Words (2021), were equally considerate of my needy soul. Yet, each David Whyte creation carries within it large helpings of grace served on a platter of compassion. I encountered Seven Streams at a moment in time when I resembled “an old man walking on the wet road.” See poem in our From the Book section below.
Michael Escoubas, author of Ripples Into the Light–PhotoPoetry with photographer Van-dana Bajikar


Internationally acclaimed poet David Whyte makes his home in the Pacific Northwest, where rain and changeable skies remind him of the other, more distant homes from which he comes: Yorkshire, Wales and Ireland. He travels and lectures throughout the world, bringing the insights of poetry to large audiences. He holds a degree in Marine Zoology and is the recipient of honorary degrees from Neumann College and Royal Roads University. He is the author of twelve books of poetry and four books of prose, as well as a collection of audio recordings.


What It Means to Be Free

by David Whyte

We sit on the plane, we watch,
we see clouds, grey hills,
the road edged with fuchsia,
and from a vision, near Bantry,
an old man walking on the wet road.

Behind him the light opens
in a long arch across the sea.
He has a stick, a hat, old shoes,
a gait that says he will walk forever.

He reaches out, touching the bright
bell-like overhanging flowers with his stick.
His face lifts, catching the light as I look
out the window through deep veils
of cynicism and irony flooding the landscape.

From his face I look down at my book
into the dark interior of the plane,
surprised by the single tear.
Knowing how long it took – even to feel.
Now it seems after years of walking,
the homecoming happened in a single step.

The imagination cradled so long
returns grown with its manly gift
and the shut bud of my emotion
opens like a flower on the white page.


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