|Public Domain (Fair Use)|
Well-known for his many collections of poetry, he received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1995, the second Irish poet to do so since W.B. Yeats. One of his most famous works is a translation of the epic Anglo-Saxon poem Beowulf into modern English. There are many informative articles available on-line about Heaney's life and contribution to English Literature, so I will not attempt to fill this space with more than I have already said. I would like to share with you one of my favourite Heaney poems. Perhaps it is the Irish in me which has always been drawn to Heaney's love of the land and the soil, and his exploration of the father/son relationship has always struck me as heart-breakingly honest. With this in mind, I have chosen the poem Follower. The poem is read in the clip below, and a discussion of the poem follows, for anyone who is interested in the nitty-gritty of his style and imagery.