Seamus Heaney: Irish Poet, Writer & Nobel Laureate

“Anyone who reads poetry has reason to rejoice at living in the age when Seamus Heaney is writing”

The New York Times Book Review

In 1995 Heaney was awarded the Nobel Prize for what the Swedish Academy proclaimed his “works of lyrical beauty and ethical depth, which exalt everyday miracles and the living past.” In his poetry, Heaney often considers the role and responsibility a poet should play in society, exploring themes of self-discovery and spiritual growth and addressing political and cultural issues related to Irish history. His poetry is characterised by sensuous language, sexual metaphors, and nature imagery. Many critics agree with Robert Lowell’s assessment of him as “the greatest Irish poet since Yeats.”

“There is one important thing to say about poetry: you don’t need to know a lot of it for it to have value and meaning in your life or the life of your society.”

Seamus Heaney, Friends of Classics, 13th January 2004

” If you have a strong first world and a strong set of relationships then in some part of you you are always free, you can walk the world because you know where you belong, you have some place to come back to.”

Seamus Heaney at Magherafelt Civic Reception January 1996


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