Category: Poetry

North by Seamus Heaney

North by Seamus Heaney

It’s funny that Dennis O’Driscoll begins his interview of Seamus Heaney about North by quoting a description of it as “a very oblique and intense book” because I found it not nearly as oblique as Wintering Out or Door Into the Dark. Heaney divided North into two parts, “a first section that has poems full …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2021/06/20/north-by-seamus-heaney/

Vulnerable AF by Tarriona Ball

So you know how operas are transcendent experiences, with the music and the singing and the acting (well, sometimes the acting) coming together to create a wondrous whole that you can’t stop thinking about or humming for days? But then you get it into your head to look up the lyrics you’ve been singing and …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2021/06/11/vulnerable-af-by-tarriona-ball/

Firstborn by Louise Glück

Firstborn by Louise Glück

I have to confess that I didn’t get a lot of, or get a lot out of, Firstborn, the debut collection of poems from Louise Glück. It was published in 1968, when she was 25. Fifty-two years and a dozen or so collections later, she won the Nobel Prize for Literature. Like my reading of …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2021/04/25/firstborn-by-louise-gluck/

Wintering Out by Seamus Heaney

Wintering Out by Seamus Heaney

Wintering Out struck me as even more oblique than Door into the Dark, and I often struggled to see and hear what Heaney was connecting with. Not that they have to be something that I can find on first reading, or even second or third. Wintering Out has the first appearance of Tollund Man, a …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2021/03/07/wintering-out-by-seamus-heaney/

Beowulf translated by Maria Dahvana Headley

Beowulf by Maria Dahvana Headley

Bro! As has been said before, Beowulf is a poem that forces translators to show their style from the very first word. That word in the original is “Hwæt,” an Old English attention grabber, and how translators render it tells a lot about what’s coming in the rest of the poem. Will the version lean …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2020/12/06/beowulf-translated-by-maria-dahvana-headley/

Door into the Dark by Seamus Heaney

Door into the Dark

I admit that my first time through Door into the Dark I did not get as much out of it as I did from Death of a Naturalist. Entering again, I see more in the rooms that Heaney is making, evoking, although there is much that is still murky to me. The titles of the …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2020/10/04/door-into-the-dark-by-seamus-heaney/

Death of a Naturalist by Seamus Heaney

Death of a Naturalist by Seamus Heaney

Ideally, of course, I would take the time to live with Death of a Naturalist for a good long while, absorbing the images, being surprised by new readings, seeing more levels of meaning on re-reading, having some poems shift from mild interest to true favorite, having others fade only to be rediscovered later and seem …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2020/09/05/death-of-a-naturalist-by-seamus-heaney/

Stepping Stones: Interviews with Seamus Heaney by Dennis O’Driscoll

Stepping Stones: Interviews with Seamus Heaney

So now I want to read all of Seamus Heaney’s poetry. I want to start with Death of a Naturalist and see what set him apart from other poets getting started. I want to follow him up North to see how he both did and did not address the Troubles of his native Northern Ireland. …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2020/02/02/stepping-stones-interviews-with-seamus-heaney-by-dennis-odriscoll/

Lines Composed a Few Yards from Schlachtensee, With Apologies to W.W.

Five years have past; five summers, with the length Of five long winters! and again I read These pages, rolled from their printing-press With a rotary hum.—Once again Do I behold those last and polished drafts That many a wild scene describe, Acts the more connected to themes And th’ arguments of the plays. The …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2019/09/20/lines-composed-a-few-yards-from-schlachtensee-with-apologies-to-w-w/

The Door by Margaret Atwood

Morning In The Burned House is one of my favorite collections of poetry but I took my time getting to Margaret Atwood’s latest because her recent output of fiction (i.e. pretty much everything after Alias Grace) has been not great to terrible. The Door, sadly, doesn’t reach the heights of MitBH but is still a …

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2019/03/20/the-door-by-margaret-atwood/