Seamus Heaney: a great and generous soul whose genius overrode fear and bigotry

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Seamus Heaney died on Friday and the tributes continue to flow. Here is a piece from The Observer:

Great poets, supposedly, should be mad and bad: tormented, tempestuous and at least a little demented. Seamus Heaney was none of these things. He exuded sanity, on the page and in person. He was calm, restrained, centred. And this was not a mere matter of personality. There was more than enough madness and badness around him, in Ireland and in the world. He knew that quiet decency and careful, meticulous words posed a more profound challenge to his times than any wildness ever could. His gift, as an artist and as a public figure, was an immense, unwavering, implacable civility.

Read the rest here.

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