Seamus Heaney

(April 13,1939 - August 30, 2013 / Castledàwson, County Londonderry)

Personal Helicon


for Michael Longley

As a child, they could not keep me from wells
And old pumps with buckets and windlasses.
I loved the dark drop, the trapped sky, the smells
Of waterweed, fungus and dank moss.


One, in a brickyard, with a rotted board top.
I savoured the rich crash when a bucket
Plummeted down at the end of a rope.
So deep you saw no reflection in it.


A shallow one under a dry stone ditch
Fructified like any aquarium.
When you dragged out long roots from the soft mulch
A white face hovered over the bottom.


Others had echoes, gave back your own call
With a clean new music in it. And one
Was scaresome, for there, out of ferns and tall
Foxgloves, a rat slapped across my reflection.


Now, to pry into roots, to finger slime,
To stare, big-eyed Narcissus, into some spring
Is beneath all adult dignity. I rhyme
To see myself, to set the darkness echoing.

Submitted: Thursday, November 11, 2010
Edited: Thursday, November 11, 2010

Do you like this poem?
0 person liked.
0 person did not like.

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (Personal Helicon by Seamus Heaney )

Enter the verification code :

There is no comment submitted by members..

Top Poems

  1. Phenomenal Woman
    Maya Angelou
  2. The Road Not Taken
    Robert Frost
  3. If You Forget Me
    Pablo Neruda
  4. Still I Rise
    Maya Angelou
  5. Dreams
    Langston Hughes
  6. Annabel Lee
    Edgar Allan Poe
  7. If
    Rudyard Kipling
  8. I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings
    Maya Angelou
  9. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
    Robert Frost
  10. Invictus
    William Ernest Henley

PoemHunter.com Updates

New Poems

  1. Let's Think About Humanity, Prodip Kumar
  2. On My Father's Yortsayt, Abraham Sutzkever
  3. The Bottom Line, Abraham Sutzkever
  4. Inside Me, Abraham Sutzkever
  5. नोँनि हाइनायाव, Bahadur Basumatary
  6. Paris 1988, Abraham Sutzkever
  7. Remembrances Of Others, Abraham Sutzkever
  8. Everything But God, Anne Pierson Wiese
  9. All Night Long, Anne Pierson Wiese
  10. Tell Me, Anne Pierson Wiese

Poem of the Day

poet Pablo Neruda

I want you to know
one thing.

You know how this is:
if I look
at the crystal moon, at the red branch
of the slow autumn at my window,
if I touch
...... Read complete »

   
[Hata Bildir]