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Video: Though There are Torturers | Michael Coady

Michael Coady reads his poem “Though There Are Torturers” in the UCD Special Collections Reading Room. Part of the Irish Poetry Reading Archive.


Though There Are Torturers

Though there are torturers in the world
There are also musicians.
Though, at this moment,
Men are screaming in prisons,
There are jazzmen raising storms
Of sensuous celebration,
And orchestras releasing
Glories of the Spirit.


Though the image of God
Is everywhere defiled,
A man in West Clare
Is playing the concertina,
The Sistine Choir is levitating
Under the dome of St. Peter’s,
And a drunk man on the road
Is singing, for no reason.

Copyright Michael Coady. The poem is included in Vox Populi for educational purposes only.

Running time: 1 minute

Email subscribers may click the title of this post to watch the video.

Michael Coady (born 1939) is an Irish poet, short story writer, local historian, photographer, genealogist, journalist and “a lapsed trombone player” (his own description), born in Carrick-on-Suir, County Tipperary, Ireland, where he continues to live. His awards include The Patrick Kavanagh Poetry Award in 1979, the Lawrence O’Shaughnessy Award in 2004 and he was a prizewinner in the Francis MacManus competition for short stories in 1987 and 1993. His work is noted for its celebration of place, particularly his home town and the people who live there. It has also been praised for its compassion and for its successful fusion of literary language with the reported demotic of his community. Coady has mined poetic gold from the small, intimate, urban community (surrounded by rural countryside) to which he belongs. His poetry collections are published by Gallery Press and include Two for a Woman, Three for a Man; Oven Lane; All Souls; One Another; and Going by Water. (Adapted from Wikimedia).

Michael Coady

9 comments on “Video: Though There are Torturers | Michael Coady

  1. Lisa Zimmerman
    August 17, 2022

    I’m going to memorize this one.❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    • Vox Populi
      August 18, 2022

      I’ve always thought that the test of a great poem is whether it sticks with me.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Jolly Watson
    August 16, 2022

    Please let me know if you need to reschedule.


  3. Sean Sexton
    August 14, 2022

    So much what I need this morning.
    I will throw in with the drunk man singing at the end


  4. loranneke
    August 13, 2022

    Yes, a treasure, that man…


  5. cgainey
    August 13, 2022

    Michael Coady is one of the truly great living Irish poets. He has long been a friend of the Carlow MFA program, participating in the university’s Irish residencies for a number of years. More Americans should be aware of him and read his poems! Thanks for bringing him and his work to a wider audience.


    • Vox Populi
      August 13, 2022

      Thanks, Celeste. I agree. Michael Coady is a living treasure.



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This entry was posted on August 13, 2022 by in Opinion Leaders, Poetry, Social Justice, War and Peace and tagged , , , , , .

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