From The Burkean:

Icarus magazine currently holds the reputation of being Trinity College’s — if not Ireland’s — premier poetry journal… with contributions from Seamus Heaney and John Montague.

…our writers concocted various alter egos … to send in the most woeful poetry imaginable, hoping our diverse credentials would get our literary horrors over the line in the final cut for the Icarus print edition. The results didn’t disappoint.

To be clear, these contributions are woeful by any metric and fact they were considered for print is an indictment to any artistic rigour practised by Icarus and its stewards.

Among the poems printed was an erotic tribute to Ebun Joseph as well as an anti-racist screed by a woman named Adaku Dyport-a-me, documenting structural racism in the Direct Provision system and the fact Ireland’s original inhabitants were a race of black pygmies.

Read the complete story at The Burkean here.



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9 Responses

  1. James Sale

    This is so, so funny – tragic even – so we’ve had Joe Biden who is Irish (though I imagined for a long while he was an American) but NOT stupid, and now we have the Icarus people, who are Irish – like Biden – but ARE stupid. Really, can one bear all this stereotyping? We need to close down virtually all the Universities, not just in Ireland, but across the Western world – they are just full of stupid people and sadly the virus is contagious and will do far more damage than the Covid virus. Any chance Pfizer could help out with a vaccine?

  2. Brian Yapko

    I agree with James. This is both funny and tragic. It would be hilarious except that the leftist decision to elevate diversity over talent — or even minimal competence — is poisoning academia, the medical profession, the legal profession and every aspect of our social and professional lives. I couldn’t care less about skin color or background or whatever — the person piloting the plane better be excellent at the job. The same with the person holding the scalpel. And is there a reason why the person holding the quill should be held to a different standard? Or are we expected to accept mediocrity — or worse — in every aspect of our lives so that everyone is represented in all things at all times? It’s a madhouse.

  3. Paul Freeman

    On a related note, that dire poem by Bono about Putin’s ‘Special Military Operation’, St. Patrick and the expulsion of snakes, which was read out in Congress, I believe, seems to be a triple limerick.

  4. Mike Bryant

    Icarus, Once Respected Irish Poetry Magazine

    Because they bought the lie of equity,
    They published poor, black, Pygmy poetry.
    Too woke, too dumb, their reputation’s done,
    The Burkeans burnt up Icarus in the Sun.

  5. Joseph S. Salemi

    Trinity College once had the deserved reputation of being one of the best seats of higher learning in the West for the study of English literature. Now (like most of academia) it has decayed into a left-wing satrapy of “wokeness,” cultural Marxism, anti-civilizational freakiness, and postmodernist jargon.

    What The Burkean has done is priceless. It reminds me of Alan Sokal’s magnificent hoax against one of those pretentious theory-spouting peer-reviewed journals several years ago. He sent them an article filled with the meaningless but trendy blather that passes for scholarship these days, and they published it. Their embarrassment was immense when Sokal publicly revealed that the article was pure fakery and bullshit.

    Let’s see how the editorial staff of Icarus reacts to this public embarrassment.

  6. Margaret Coats

    The poorly educated and humorless editors of Icarus will be offended that an author with “offensive” views was able to fool them, and they will implement more thorough screening–not of what is submitted, but of the submitter. Can you imagine how many apologies they owe to the garbage writers who have filled their publication over the years, now that they have inadvertently published satirical submissions?

  7. Shaun C. Duncan

    This puts me in the mind of Australia’s Ern Malley Affair of the 1940s, where a modernist literary journal was pranked by a pair of conservative poets into not only publishing deliberate nonsense by the fictitious author Ern Malley but also hailing him as a genius on par with Auden and Thomas.

    The hoax took in so many among the modernist literati here and abroad that eventually they had to insist Ern Malley had “got away” from the hoaxers and that they had in fact produced genuine works of genius, despite their worst intentions, by employing surrealist techniques in their composition. This line of argument persists to this day, despite the fact the poems are obvious garbage to anyone who can read. In this sense it’s the hoax that keeps giving, even 80 years after the fact.

    The publishers of Icarus will pursue a different tack in the face of their public humiliation and will most likely insist the Burkean poems are deeply racist and reinforce the desperate need to “decolonize” Irish poetry even further.

    • Joseph S. Salemi

      Sort of like Chatterton’s fake medieval productions. They took on a life of their own even after it was clear that the texts were not medieval at all.

      But in the case of the Ern Malley affair, it seems to me that the desperate attempt of Harris and others to claim that the faked poems were nevertheless genuinely good and worthy of respect was nothing but a rearguard action of retreat in the face of total humiliation. What else could they say?

      • Shaun C. Duncan

        Yes, it was a desperate attempt to save face because the scandal was so great they felt it threatened to extinguish modernism in Australia completely – and where would we be then?

        The rehabilitation seems to have begun when the postmodernists arrived and transformed the scandal into one of those “teachable moments” leftists love so much. Now it seems no one is willing to admit the poems are complete rubbish and in fact many still insist Ern Malley is the greatest poet Australia ever produced. Meanwhile the conservative (boo! hiss!) poets who actually created the works are usually condemned as talentless mediocrities. The artistic triumph was all due to modernist techniques, you see.

        I haven’t read Chatterton’s fakes but my understanding is that they were actually decent poems in their own right.

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