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I was introduced to the poetry of Damian Firth by a student, who had chanced upon four of his poems on the internet, when sent off to find a text to set to music. I was immediately struck by the beautiful imagery, and concise spare use of language.
Firth (1941-2013) was a Canadian poet, whose life had sunk into alcohol poisoning and despair, until a remarkable transformation and spiritual awakening 20 years before his death. In an essay about the poet, Jack Mclean calls him a ‘hidden treasure’ and says 'Damian represented what 'respectable' society might consider to be a marginal person: a man who never married and had no children, a mentally challenged individual, who because of a disability, was not able to work full-time, although he did work one day a week.'
Suitable for school and community choirs
Text by Damian Firth