Thursday, April 25, 2013

Digging, by Seamus Heaney

"Between my finger and my thumb  
The squat pen rests; snug as a gun."

I'm always pleasantly surprised when I find myself connecting to poetry.  I don't know why this surprise still lingers.  Initially, it was because I had studied it so much, poetry had lost much of its magic for me.  This last year and a half, since I read The Disney Princesses, I've been finding myself drawn more and more to poetry, whether a classic, like Rime of the Ancient Mariner or Digging.

I came across Digging by chance.  I had been flipping through my Norton Anthology of Poetry and I stopped on a page with poems by Seamus Heaney.  I recognized the name since I read Heaney's The Cure At Troy a few (like 11!) years ago.  I stopped and my eyes fell on the first lines of Digging.  I was hooked.  I sat and read the rest of the short poem.  It was lovely, an ode or homage maybe, to the narrator's father and grandfather.  The father and grandfather spent their lives with spades, working with their hands, but the narrator can not dig, he instead holds the "squat pen" to write.  It was a lovely, interesting poem.  Though short, it told a story.  I might read the rest of Heaney's poems in my Anthology.  I might re-read The Cure At Troy too. 

There are potatoes in the poem.

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