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Compare the ways Heaney writes about people and the natural world in 'Digging' and 'At the Potato Digging'. Go on to explain ways in which this theme is presented in any two of the Pre-1914 poems.

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Introduction

Compare the ways Heaney writes about people and the natural world in 'Digging' and 'At the Potato Digging'. Go on to explain ways in which this theme is presented in any two of the Pre-1914 poems. The main similarity about 'Digging' and 'At a Potato Digging' is that they are obviously, both about digging. But 'Digging' is about the writer's memories of his 'old man' and how well he could 'Digging'. The poem, 'At a Potato Digging' is about the potato famine. We know the writer in 'Digging' feels comfortable with his pen. He tells us it rests 'snug as a gun' in between his fingers. Later on in the poem, we find out how at home his father and grand-father were with a spade. He tells us how he admired them 'stooping in rhythm through potato drills'. It is similar to 'At a Potato Digging', by the way it shows how close the people were to nature. In 'At a Potato Digging', the people perhaps, worship the earth as the god, or worship Mother Nature. ...read more.

Middle

The poet tells you about the 'wild higgledy skeletons' that 'scoured the land' and 'wolfed the blighted root and died'. This describes the people that starved or were killed by the potato famine in 1845. The people are also described as 'grubbing for plants' or 'rooting' for food, like 'plucked birds', because they are starved and 'beaks of famine snipped at guts'. This refers to nature, because it is saying that the people are like featherless birds, and are also being reminded of their deprivation of food by birds. The 'bitch earth' was filled with 'stinking potatoes'. Walt Whitman describes nature in a very dangerous way in the poem, 'Patrolling Barnegat'. The 'wild' storm and the 'sea high running' sound quite menacing, and this is just at the beginning. The 'demoniac laughter' of the wind sounds very evil and menacing. The sound is 'fitfully piercing and pealing', and the surroundings with 'their savagest trinity lashing'. The word 'trinity' is from the Bible, so Whitman is making the storm sound religious. Perhaps, he is saying that it is God's wrath. ...read more.

Conclusion

Clouds are 'white wool sacks' which is very soft and welcoming. He tells you that the insects have 'happy wings' and that the 'flower head swings'. Not only is this a rhyming couplet, similar to the rest of the poem, but it is an evocative use of language. He is giving the scene, a very simple, and na�ve world, that you would fell safe in. A lot of colour is given in this poem. In the winter the land is bare and frosty, but very different is the summer, being stained with colour. The summer is said to be 'beaming', and the moor hen comes out from her 'hiding place' as though the winter was forbidding, but she now feels safe. The assonance, alliteration, adjectives and verbs used in these four poems, were all used to describe the full personality of nature. The way that the characters of nature, e.g. wind, rain, sea, and sun, are portrayed, all use very descriptive and concentrated words. The storm in 'Patrolling Barnegat' was illustrated in fine detail. I especially liked the 'demoniac laughter' because it sounds very sinister. In 'Sonnet', I liked the way the buttercups were described as they 'stain with gold the meadow drain'. ...read more.

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