Rest in peace Seamus Heaney,died age 74

 

Digging

BY SEAMUS HEANEY

Between my finger and my thumb   

The squat pen rests; snug as a gun.

Under my window, a clean rasping sound   

When the spade sinks into gravelly ground:   

My father, digging. I look down

Till his straining rump among the flowerbeds   

Bends low, comes up twenty years away   

Stooping in rhythm through potato drills   

Where he was digging.

The coarse boot nestled on the lug, the shaft   

Against the inside knee was levered firmly.

He rooted out tall tops, buried the bright edge deep

To scatter new potatoes that we picked,

Loving their cool hardness in our hands.

By God, the old man could handle a spade.   

Just like his old man.

My grandfather cut more turf in a day

Than any other man on Toner’s bog.

Once I carried him milk in a bottle

Corked sloppily with paper. He straightened up

To drink it, then fell to right away

Nicking and slicing neatly, heaving sods

Over his shoulder, going down and down

For the good turf. Digging.

The cold smell of potato mould, the squelch and slap

Of soggy peat, the curt cuts of an edge

Through living roots awaken in my head.

But I’ve no spade to follow men like them.

Between my finger and my thumb

The squat pen rests.

I’ll dig with it.

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4 Comments

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4 responses to “Rest in peace Seamus Heaney,died age 74

  1. May he rest in peace and his words ego on for many to hear.

  2. This is an awesome piece of poetry
    Penny, and a wonderful poet indeed 🙂
    I hope that your week has been kind
    my sweet and great friend 🙂

    Andro xxxx

  3. I hope that you are enjoying a fine Thursday Penny,
    hey and it will soon be the weekend again 🙂 🙂 Yaaay

    Andro xxxx

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