Seamus Heaney's Poem "Digging" and Peter Meinke's Essay

  • Length: 2 pages
  • Subject: Literature
  • Type: Essay
  • Paper: #75227016

Excerpt from Essay :

Seamus Heaney's poem "Digging" and Peter Meinke's poem "Advice to My Son" both address the idea of family and how it is essential for connections between members of the family to be strong. Even with this, they both deal with the matter from different perspectives. In addition to the obvious fact that one concentrates on showing a son's feeling toward his father and grandfather while the other involves a father's feelings toward his son, the poems are also different when considering the speaker's attitude toward his family. Heaney's speaker seems to accept his fate and to consider that it would be difficult and almost impossible for him to connect with his father and grandfather. In contrast, Meinke's speaker is enthusiastic about connecting with his son and actually provides him with advice in an attempt to have him better prepared to deal with life.

"Digging" initially presents the speaker at his desk, getting ready to begin writing. The fact that his father is working in the garden makes it difficult for him to concentrate and his imagination runs wild thinking about the moments when the speaker was a small boy and his father was working on potato fields. The speaker then proceeds to go even further back to the moments when his grandfather was harvesting peat.

While this seems like a general set of memories, the fact that Heaney uses a lot of powerful words to describe concepts that would otherwise seem perfectly normal makes it possible for audiences to understand that there is more to the speaker's thinking than one might be inclined to believe. The fact that he associates the pen with a gun and his father digging flowers with his father digging…

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