Friday, August 30, 2013

Seamus Heaney's Passing

Word came tonight from Ireland that Seamus Heaney died today - our great poet, son of a farmer, sweet Northern Irishman. We lit candles, drank bowls of airag and read his poems aloud in Outer Mongolia - Shane, Eimear and me. I think he might have liked that. Here's my favourite called "Scaffolding": Masons, when they start upon a building,/ Are careful to test out the scaffolding./ Make sure that planks won't slip at busy points,/ Secure all ladders, tighten bolted joints./ And yet all this comes down when the job's done/ Showing off walls of sure and solid stone./ So if, my dear, there sometimes seem to be/ Old bridges breaking between you and me/ Never fear. We may let the scaffold fall/ Confident that we have built our wall.

1 comment:

OR Melling said...

PS Having made a similar comment on LinkedIn's Irish Abroad group, I was told he was being read aloud and remembered in Switzerland and Afghanistan. No doubt many a place elsewhere too!