• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

What is the importance of the land in twentieth century Irish poetry?

Extracts from this document...


What is the importance of the land in twentieth century Irish poetry? The Irish people value the land, because ever since the Normans invaded they have never had a united Ireland. A part of it has always been ruled by a foreigner they feel very possessive about the land they own even matter if it is only a few acres. The three poets I am going to study are Kavanagh, Kinsella and Heaney. They all have a link to each other, soil. They each have their own main theme, Kavanagh chooses a biblical theme, The Bog lands for Heaney and Ireland's destruction is Kinsella's theme. In 'Digging' by Heaney the three characters that are mentioned are his grandfather, father and himself. Heaney sees the land as a symbolic, metaphoric reference to Ireland. ...read more.


"I stumbled in his hobnailed wake" He shows his father as a very skilled farmer, "The sod rolled over without breaking." This is very hard to do and takes years of experience to manage to do. There are many nautical references in the poem such as "his shoulders globed like a full sail strung" In these images it shows his father not as a simpleton farmer but like a highly skilled sailor. Again he shows remorse as in 'Digging' that he will never own the farm and work the land "All I ever did was follow in his broad shadow around the farm" The Poem entitled 'Punishment' is about a bog woman who was found in swamps in Holland. Heaney sees the land as preserving history because the woman is completely perfect apart from a few breaks like the collapsing of the rib cage. ...read more.


Where as Kavanagh is almost angry at the land "Or why do we stand here shivering?" this is a reference to the Great Hunger, he is asking the land what have they done to deserve such a punishment. He shows that the land influences his poetry in the line "Is there some imagination in these wet clods?" asking the soil if it can help him. Kinsella wrote the poem 'Leaf Eater' to portray that Ireland cannot live without destroying it self. "Gropes back on itself and begins to eat its own leaf." Because as everyone knows if it does not eat the leaf it will die but, if it eats the leaf the grub will fall and plunge to its death. I think these poems are very effective in conveying their feeling and passion for the land they all share. Each poet shows how it is very important for their survival but the land must be preserved and looked after if it is to sustain the population. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Seamus Heaney section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Seamus Heaney essays

  1. Seamus Heaney - The Skunk analysis

    Its mystery vanished when it came into full view. Without its mystery, the skunk was 'demythologized'. It was snuffing the floor within five feet of Heaney. These two lines explain the word 'ordinary'. In the final stanza, Heaney reveals that the first five stanzas were based on a memory: 'It all came back to me last night'.

  2. The Historyof War Poetry and the works of Wilfred Owen

    In the strength of their strength Suspended--stopped and held(3) Rupert Chawner Brooke He was an English poet known for his idealistic war sonnets written during the First World War (especially The Soldier); however, he never experienced combat at first hand.

  1. Comparative Poetry Essay - "The Thought Fox" and "Digging"

    In this sense, I feel that Hughes has rather an arrogant attitude towards writing poetry, implying that he has been especially picked to receive ideas and inspiration from some celestial being. Thus a major difference between these poems is that whilst Heaney sees his pen as the vessel for the

  2. Compare the way in which different poets present the theme of growing up

    This shows he's upset and isn't happy saying the girl's name. The final eight lines are the most important of the poem, they sum up the theme and explain why the boy is hurting so much and how it links to Jessica. It also exposes what the father is like.

  1. Cross Genre Comparison - 'Blackberries' by Leslie Norris and 'Blackberry Picking' by Seamus Heaney.

    he obviously looks forward to, and the excitement in the first stanza portrays this. Heaney emphasises certain words like 'clot' and 'knot.' These words have a very hard, harsh sound and are monosyllabic so it gives a really good effect to the poem.

  2. "English poets are being forced to explore not just the matter of England, but ...

    England is not merely a landscape, but a state of being, and a place that we inhabit physically and mentally. Yet the ultimate responsibility, that of deciding what is the matter with England, and to what extent its failings are responsible for the shortcomings of society and the individual, is left to the reader.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work