Saturday, January 8, 2011

Colm Tóibín

From Colm Tóibín's Q & A with Steven Kurutz at the Wall Street Journal:

Many of your characters are people leaving or returning to Ireland. What's your relationship with your homeland?

I'd been traveling in the United States, in Texas and California. The idea of coming back in and what that's like—arriving at JFK airport and suddenly seeing the Irish waiting for the flight—that's something I know really well. Feeling for a while that you're home. And then you land and you see the buildings —oh, God. And the weather—oh, God. I'm looking out the window in Dublin now, and it's certainly not home. The place drives me crazy, but I'm stuck with it now.

Do you find Ireland more religious than America?

It's a funny society—you can go for quite a long time without meeting a Catholic. And then they suddenly come at you in hordes. I'm usually in New York for Easter and I go to midnight mass on Easter Saturday, at Saint Bonaface Oratory in Brooklyn. It does a very long and good ritual. They do baptisms at the end for adults who have been converted. It's so cheerful. They seem...[read on]
--Marshal Zeringue