Into the Grey
‘Into the Grey’ is a collection that follows the poet as she lives with the impact of dementia on her two uncles, John and Brendan, and its toll on the family members who cared for them. It is a journey that will be familiar to many families.
While the collection is at times agonisingly sad, at its core it is filled with love. The poet does not shy away from the hardship of loving someone with dementia, but moments of decline are balanced with moments of devotion and, for all its tragedy, it is a journey filled with tenderness.
The collection was launched on Saturday 4th of June 2022, as part of the Writers’s Week Festival by Minister for Education and Skills Norma Foley TD.
All profits from ‘Into the Grey’ will be shared by Our Lady of Fatima Home, Tralee, Co. Kerry and Aras Mhuire Nursing Home, Listowel, Co Kerry.
Purchase the book directly from the Nursing home - ships worldwide -
This is a book of love, a woman’s unconditional love. The poet’s uncles, Fr. John and Brendan Kennelly, suffered from dementia at the end of their lives and Mary writes of travelling with them on that final journey. Formally assured, ‘Into the Grey’ guides us through the heart of darkness. It is strong, yet tender, and the poems are lucid, accessible and a joy to read.
‘Into the Grey’ is a hauntingly moving journey into the cracked heart of the end of life and Mary Kennelly is a perceptive, astute and reflective chronicler of this. These poems should be on the bedside locker of anyone who has to face dementia in its many guises as they will almost certainly hear their own experiences reverberate on page after page.
Dr. John McDonagh
Mary Kennelly's poems for our age are heartbreakingly honest. The beauty of her writing is in the observation of lives in decline but always vivid and ever so alive.
Subtle rhythms, soft rhymes and broad vowel sounds draw a loving cloak around these uncompromising poems which chart a niece’s ever-changing relationship with two beloved uncles as they suffer mental and physical decline due to dementia. The two main sections of the book contain poems which directly address each of the uncles in turn: Fr John Kennelly and his brother, poet Brendan Kennelly. These often poignant poems invite us into the private space shared by carer and uncles and allow us to feel how they are all “recast” by the experience. To read this wise, compassionate book is to convey along the road these three people “ambushed by a dark falling too soon."
Publisher: Evensong Publications
Available in: Paperback