Poet of The Silent Things..
Seamus Heaney was sipping bourbon during a Boston snowstorm 30 years ago, trying to explain his poetry as an escape from a terrible fear of silence that always haunted him. “What is the source of our first suffering?” he asked, quoting the French philosopher Gaston Bachelard. “It lies in the fact that we hesitated to speak.
If I could make poetry that could touch into that kind of thing, that is what I would like to do,” he said, stoking his resolve to pursue “The silent things within us.”
At the core of Seamus Heaney’s poetry a profound experience is revealed – that a gap exists between the totality of what can be said and the totality of all that can be witnessed, between the limits of languages and the margins of the actual world in which we live. For Heaney ‘poetry’ is a means of measuring this gap – if not bridging it. – Ola Larsmo