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Seamus Heaney

Opened Ground

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Bij het opruimen van mijn boekenkast (of eigenlijk het steeds weer opnieuw inruimen van mijn boekenkasten in verband met het groeien van mijn poëziecollectie) kwam ik de dikke bundel ‘Opened Ground, Poems 1966 – 1996’ van de Ierse dichter Seamus Heaney (1939 – 2013) tegen. In deze bundel ook de speech die Heaney hield toen hij in 1995 de Nobel prijs voor de Literatuur accepteerde. Hij kreeg deze ‘for his works of lyrical beauty and ethical depht’.

Ik koos voor een kort maar persoonlijk en heel toegankelijk gedicht getiteld ‘The Errand’.

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The Errand

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‘On you go now! Run, son, like the devil

And tell your mother to try

To find me a bubble for the spirit level

And a new knot for his tie.’

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But still he was glad, I know,, when I stood my ground,

Putting it up to him

With a smile that trumpedhis smile and his fool’s errand,

Waiting for the next move in the game.

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Seamus Heaney

Night Drive

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Uit mijn boekenkast heb ik vandaag gekozen voor Seamus Heaney, Opened Ground; poems 1966-1996. En uit deze vuistdikke verzamelbundel het gedicht ‘Night Drive’ uit de bundel ‘Door into the dark’ uit 1969.

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Night Drive

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The smells of ordinariness

Were new on the night drive through France:

Rain and hay and woods on the air

Made warm draughts in the open car

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Signposts whitened relentlessly.

Montreuil, Abbeville, Beauvais

Were promised, promised, came and went,

Each place granting its name’s fulfilment.

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A combine groaning its way late

Bled seeds across its work-light.

A forest fire smouldered out.

One by one small cafés shut.

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I thought of you continuously

A thousand miles south where Italy

Laid its loin to France on the darkened sphere.

Your ordinariness was renewed there.

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Heaney-Into-the-Dark018

Strange fruit

Seamus Heaney

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Vandaag uit een bundel uit mijn boekenkast ‘Opened ground, poems 1966-1996’ van Seamus Heaney het gedicht ‘Strange fruit’.

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Strange fruit

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Here is the girl’s head like an enhumed gourd.

Oval-faced, prune-skinned, prune-stones for teeth.

They unswaddled the wet fern of her hair

and made an exhibition of its coil,

let the air at her leathery beauty.

Pash of tallow, perishable treasure:

Her broken noseis dark as a turf clod,

het eyeholes blank as pools in the old workings.

Diodorus Sicilus confessed

his gradual ease among the likes of this:

Murdered, forgotten, nameless, terrible

beheaded girl, outstaring axe

and beautification, oustaring

what had begun to feel like reverence

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01 Jul 2010 --- Nobel Prize-winning Irish poet and writer Seamus Heaney in The Linen Hall Library, Belfast, N.Ireland | Location: Belfast, N'Ireland.  --- Image by © Geray Sweeney/Corbis

01 Jul 2010 — Nobel Prize-winning Irish poet and writer Seamus Heaney in The Linen Hall Library, Belfast, N.Ireland | Location: Belfast, N’Ireland. — Image by © Geray Sweeney/Corbis

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