Seamus Heaney was born in 1939 in Northern Ireland into a rural
farming family. The family where Catholic, living in a predominantly
Protestant area of the country. I can relate to this as I come from
South Africa where the tension between the black and white people is
high, this has helped me to choose my first poem "Docker". The second
poem I am going to analyse is "Follower" which tells the story of a
young boy who grows up admiring his dad but as time ticks by, things
change and people age. The third and final poem I will analyse is
"Digging" which also is about a young lad who admires his dad for his
skill, but feels bad because he isn't as skilled as his father is and
therefore chooses to dig with his pen in the form of poetry.
The poem Docker starts off with "there, in the corner" from this it
can be seen that the man is a lonely man who does not want to be
bothered, all he is doing is staring at his drink. "Speech clamped in
the lips, vice" this use of metaphor indicates that he is a anti
social person with the word "vice" once again describing the mans
power and strength. The Docker is then described as a hard and tough
man, "Cowling plated forehead and sledge head jaw" because he is
compared with very hard objects, such as a sledge head which is made
out of steel.
"That fist would drop a hammer on a Catholic" this verse is of a
violent nature which confirms the Docker as a violent aggressive man
who clearly does not like Catholics.
The mans dislike for Catholics is emphasised even more in the
following verse "The only Roman collar he tolerates, smiles all round
his sleek pint of porter". From this it can be said that even the
white foam made by his beer reminds him of Cath...
... middle of paper ...
"I wanted to grow up and plough" this proves that like with all little
boys, he wanted to be just like his dad when he grows up. He follows
his father all round the farm "In his broad shadow" which again
describes the mans huge build and strength.
In this poem, the first five stanzas represent the past, whereas the
last stanza represents the present. "I was a nuisance, tripping and
falling" The boy, who is now a man, comes to realise he was clumsy and
unskilful who was always bothering his father "Yapping always".
"But today" is the main contrast between past and present, "It is my
father who keeps stumbling behind me and will not go away" His father
has obviously aged and become enfeebled while his son has now grown up
and become more powerful and skilful than what his father is. It is
his father who follows him around now and will not go away.
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