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Personal Helicon by Samuel Heaney

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Personal Helicon Personal Helicon by Samuel Heaney is a descriptive poem of a child and his fascination of wells. The subject matter of wells is not very typical in poetry although the author, using stylistic devices, has developed the poem so that works on two levels. One level being of a very simple poem and on another level, the use of sounds and powerful images makes an instant impact on the reader's senses. The five stanzas of poetry give a very personal and emotional insight into the author's experiences on the farm. The diction and sentence structure used is typical of a child, and the simple language promotes the feeling of innocence and the sense of enjoyment. The poem contains vivid although often grotesque imagery and helps add to a childlike outlook on life. ...read more.


In one sense he is discovering an exciting game but in another he can be seen to be discovering who his identity, as he progresses from child to man. The change in age and pursuit of indentify can evidently be seen through his writing in the last paragraph. 'I rhyme to see myself, to set the darkness echoing.' The line, 'A white face hovered over the bottom,' seems unusual in the way that the reflected face is surely his although he describes it very distantly as if he is not sure who is staring back at him. In my opinion it is him looking though a well as a grown man, and whilst recollecting childhood memories through the poem, he is taken back by his aged appearance now. ...read more.


'Dank moss,' and 'soft mulch' are both examples of the unpleasant imagery used by Heaney in this poem. The combination of this imagery with the use of senses like sounds and smells is effective in creating a detailed description of the well, so that we can truly experience what he is feeling. 'Others had echoes give back your call, with a clean new music in it.' I believe this line is symbolic because it represents the man calling but only hearing his on voice in return which might suggest that he is lonesome. I believe that the clean new music in the voice that replied to be his more deeper grown up voice and he was just surprised how he had changed from a child. ...read more.

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