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Comparing Follower and Digging by Seamus Heany

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Introduction

Comparing ' Follower ' and ' Digging ' The title ' Follower ' intrigues curiosity for what the poem is about, and what is doing the following. This poem, the ' Follower ', is about the writer looking up to his father whilst he ploughs some land, and how the roles have changed. The title ' Digging ' is quite plain, and unusual for a poem, which in a way would intrigue the reader to see what the poem was about. ' Digging ' is about the writer looking out of his window and seeing his father digging, then reminiscing about his grandfather digging. Both these titles intrigue the reader, because they are one word titles. The ' Follower ' contains imagery that use the writer's perspective as a child, like referring to his father's shoulders as ' a full said strung between the shafts and the furrow '. ...read more.

Middle

' using his tools and plough. In ' Digging ' he changes his perspective on it, and says :- ' But I've no spade to follow men like them. Between my finger and my thumb The squat pen rests. I'll dig with it. ' This shows how he doesn't want to follow his family's tradition anymore, but instead he wants to ' dig ' with his pen which is the equivalent to writing with it. The two poems are different in this sense, but suggests that maybe he was younger in ' Follower ' than in ' Digging '. Both poems rhyme, but in the ' Follower ' it follows an AB half rhyme scheme and is consistent throughout the entire poem. In ' Digging ' however, it sometimes rhymes and sometimes doesn't. ...read more.

Conclusion

In 'Follower' there are six 4 lined stanzas, which follow an AB half-rhyming pattern. In ' Digging ' each stanza is varied - there are 8 stanzas, the first being 2 lines, then 3, then 4, then 5, then 2, then 8, then 4 and finally another 3. The first stanza acts almost like an introduction. The second and third stanza I think were originally only one, but the writer separated them in order to create enjambment and emphasis on the word ' down '. The fifth stanza is two lines, but it's colloquial language and is separated from the rest of the poem. The sixth stanza ( 8 lines ) is the longest, and tells the story of his grandfather. The seventh stanza is another 4 lines, with the last stanza repeating most of the first stanza and reducing in line length on each of the three lines. Hopefully this essay will successfully compare the similarities and differences of these two poems written by Seamus Heaney. ...read more.

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