Letter to seamus heaney

Powerful Essays
Topics: Poetry
A Letter To Seamus Heaney
Dear Mr. Heaney,
I have recently studied your poetry for my Leaving Certificate English course and enjoyed it immensely. I admire the method by which you turn your poetry in to an exploration of more expansive topics. I am going to discuss some of your poems and the effects that they had on me as a reader. A poem I especially admire is The Tollund Man. I found your exploration of the past to interpret the future to be inspiring. I felt that the parallel drawn between the ritual killing Age of the Iron Age and the killings of innocent victims in contemporary Ireland to be particularly insightful. I however see your image of the Tollund Man to be a much more peaceful one as the man willingly gave his life to the “goddess” bog and “she tightened her torc around him” embracing his ritualistic sacrifice so that she may bring the Spring once more. We see this peace in “the mild pods of his eyelids” which suggest serenity, however this is in stark contrast to the atrocities carried out in Northern Ireland during the Troubles. The image of “tell-tale skin and teeth flecking the sleepers” is grotesque and horrifying to imagine, and I feel however you may try that it might be impossible for you to translate the savage murders of the present into the more meaningful death of the Tollund Man. I was deeply moved upon reading the concluding line of the poem where you state that you “feel lost, unhappy and at home” I find your attempt to make bearable the atrocities of the Troubles highly admirable and your desire for your own world to change truly moving. You have said of your poetry that you are searching for “images and symbols adequate to our predicament” but I feel that the sadistic murders of our time may be too horrifying to relate to any killing of the past, ritual or not.
Although your poem “The Forge” may celebrate local craftsmanship and explore cultural roots, it is my opinion that your real purpose in writing this poem was to

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Powerful Essays

    Seamus Heaney

    • 1739 Words
    • 7 Pages

    collection ‘Death of a Naturalist’ in terms of the representation of these themes? Seamus Heaney was born in Northern Ireland in 1939. Heaney’s father was a farmer, and a cattle dealer, he was also very popular within the community. It can be said that Seamus Heaney’s reference to farming and love of nature can be due to his upbringing, as well as his regular mention of love and pride for Northern Ireland. Seamus Heaney’s feelings towards Ireland’s cultural controversies are addressed in the majority…

    • 1739 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Better Essays

    Seamus Heaney

    • 1239 Words
    • 5 Pages

    The book "Open Ground", by Seamus Heaney, is a book of poems. In the book, Heaney promotes a variety of different poems he has written. From this rich variety of great poems, "Punishment" and "First Kingdom" will be analyzed on imagery, theme, and rhythm throughout this paper. In both poems, Heaney uses words to portray great details and is very descriptive in his works. When reading the poems, the reader will find that gaining a visual idea of the events of the poems will be easy, due to Heaney's…

    • 1239 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Good Essays

    Seamus Heaney

    • 1112 Words
    • 5 Pages

    Dear Seamus Heaney … Write a letter to Seamus Heaney telling him how you responded to some of his poems on your course. Support the points you make by detailed reference to the poems you choose to write about. Lauren Carr, 8 White Road, Stefanstown, Clonsilla, Ohio. Mr Seamus Heaney, 1864 Forbes Rd, Piercetown, Amara, Dublin 18. Dear Seamus Heaney, During the course of my study for the Leaving Certificate, I have studied many of your poems. I enjoyed them immensely and feel compelled…

    • 1112 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Better Essays

    Seamus Heaney

    • 2515 Words
    • 11 Pages

    You have been asked to read a collection of Seamus Heaney’s poems to a 5th year class. Select 4 poems you would read and explain why. Seamus Heaney is widely recognised as one of the major poets of the twentieth century. Heaney 's Poems are based on real life experiences, which can be related to in only so many ways, because of the differences in the likes of lifestyle and culture. Heaney’s poetry appeals to students as much of it deals with issues of childhood in a manner that is mature and accessible…

    • 2515 Words
    • 11 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Better Essays

    Seamus Heaney

    • 1531 Words
    • 7 Pages

    ‘Limbo’ and ‘Bye Child’ by Seamus Heaney are poems that evoke the casualties of sexual and emotional repression in Ireland, as well as and the oppression of both women and un baptized children, in a time where religion was most prominent and people were confined to the guidelines of the church and it’s community, as it was the ruling power. Both poems present this idea through the use of a child, representative of innocence and vulnerability. Through his poetry, Heaney gives a voice to those who…

    • 1531 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    Seamus Heaney

    • 338 Words
    • 2 Pages

    If I could invite a poet of my choice to my school it would be Seamus Heaney. Heaney writes with a distinct emotion which grasps the reader. He writes about things we can all relate to e.g. Mid Term Break. Heaney is a poet I greatly admire because his poems are always the most mind boggling but they can create a clear image of. He writes with a certain enthusaism in his poems. I like the way in Mid-term break, he writes about a very personal experience, the death of his younger brother. Heaney's…

    • 338 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    Seamus Heaney Poems

    • 2300 Words
    • 10 Pages

    Good Afternoon all, I have been asked before you today to discuss my opinion on the poetry of Seamus Heaney, and although this style of learning wouldn’t be what you’d be used to, I’m hoping you will all benefit from what I have to say and leave here with a clear understanding of Heaney’s brilliance, questioning the meaning behind what he has written. I have decided to take a thematic approach to this discussion rather than spend set time talking about one poem at a time, only for you to grow confused…

    • 2300 Words
    • 10 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Good Essays

    Digging, by Seamus Heaney

    • 650 Words
    • 3 Pages

    Digging -Seamus Heaney Mª del Mar Garre García ‘Digging’ is a poem written by the Irish author Seamus Heaney in 1966. It belongs to his famous book ‘Death of a naturalist’. The work consists of thirty-four short poems and is largely concerned with life experiences and the formulation of adult identities, family relationships, and rural life. In this poem Heaney goes inside his most grateful regards of his childhood and adolescence, when his father worked in the countryside as his grandfather…

    • 650 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Digging by Seamus Heaney

    • 493 Words
    • 2 Pages

    Digging -by seamus Heaney The poet, Seamus Heaney uses simple words in his poem which is beautifully portrayed as well as easy to understand. The poem is basically about the poets respect and admiration of his father's and grandfather's hard work. The poem begins in the present tense form. The poet, Heaney, is in his room, writing while his father is digging. It can be assumed that the poet is near a window so…

    • 493 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    Seamus Heaney

    • 286 Words
    • 2 Pages

    roots were crossed with my reading”1 Heaney once said. These roots were the fields of Irish bog that were “the memory of the landscape”.2 From an early age Heaney was absorbed by the family farm, playing in its barn and the surrounding fields, with an imagination that was schooled in traditional English. Heaney tells us in the poem ‘Digging’ that he wasn’t going to follow in what was tradition to do what his father and father had before him becoming farmers. Heaney uses the metaphor of the spade as…

    • 286 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays