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Seamus Heaney Imaginative but Rooted in Reality

Uploaded by xsparklyvix on Sep 06, 2005

Heaney’s poetry is vividly imaginative, whilst being firmly rooted in reality

Explore this comment on Heaney’s poetry, referring to at least three poems

The poetry of Seamus Heaney is described as imaginative and honest whilst enabling him to share his views on the political and social situation in Ireland at that time. Through the use of metaphors and strong imagery aided by his choice of form and structure Heaney is able to appeal to a wide range of people. The use of etymology, the study of words, furthers this.
The poems in the collection ‘Death of a Naturalist’ are all nostalgic regarding Heaney’s upbringing and his family situation. Heaney uses the poetry in this section to voice his feelings of insecurity after the birth of his first child. Within this section in ‘Blackberry Picking’ Heaney uses the childhood tradition of picking blackberries to express his adult view on how naively hopeful he was as a child. The poem is used as a metaphor to explain that even as an adult that a recurring delusion, where there is a perpetual consciousness that life, love and youth do not ‘keep’ but the temptation for another try is always succumbed to. Heaney’s use of metaphors in order to relate a current feeling through a childhood incident gives evidence of not only his feelings but also is able to be related to by many who feel they are unable to express their views in similar situations. Heaney is able to appeal to these readers, through showing his feelings of worthlessness and dejection after the birth of a child, through the use of poetry. Heaney’s poetry is described as being ‘rooted in reality’ because he is able to express his truthful emotions ‘I hoped they’d keep, knew they would not’ despite the social constraints of having to feel ecstatic after the birth of a child.
Heaney’s success in showing his emotions is as a result of the strong imaginative imagery ‘our palms sticky as Bluebeard’s’. This use of strong imagery shows Heaney’s desire to create a perfect portrait of the image within his mind. Heaney uses lavish description in order to create the ‘lust for picking’. By juxtaposing this with his negative view ‘lovely canfuls smelt of rot’ he heightens the impact of his condescending adult perspective of how things never live up to our expectations.
The poem ‘Requiem for the Croppies’ describes rebel farmers in...

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Uploaded by:   xsparklyvix

Date:   09/06/2005

Category:   Poetry

Length:   5 pages (1,190 words)

Views:   15110

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