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. as Seen in Both ‘digging’ and ‘follower’,

Essay by   •  March 6, 2019  •  Essay  •  747 Words (3 Pages)  •  23 Views

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Heaney presents the theme of parent/child relationship in a variety of his poems to show admiration to his father, in his famous poem "Digging" he shows that there's a lot of hard work to put into farming, he also shows how children don't always follow their parents’ traditions and that he himself was becoming a writer instead of being a farmer like the other men in his family. Since Heaney was born in a big family of farmers, they all worked together and that made his family intimate as shown in ‘Digging’ and ‘Follower’. He portrays this paternal bond and its evolving nature through his use of language and structure. He also uses this theme to compare himself as an adult to his father and why he didn’t follow his father’s footsteps like his father’s old man “I was a nuisance, tripping, falling, yapping always. But today it is my father who keeps stumbling behind me, and will not go away. ” Heaney’s purpose with this quote is to teach the young generation that if you struggle or dislike the line of work of your father, you should find one that you shine at and enjoy doing. For example, Heaney found reading and writing poetry to be his favorite hobby rather than being a farmer.

    In ‘Follower’, Heaney starts the poem as a young boy trying to follow in his father’s footsteps. It also speaks about his father’s patience when young Heaney kept following during his work in the fields. At the end of the poem the roles reversed and his father is the one following him and “will not go away”. He now realizes as an adult that he can not measure up to his father’s patient tolerance and he feels irritated by his father. Heaney uses language to give a clear image of his admiration of his father, he preferred using ambiguity in his poems instead of being straightforward as shown in “My father, digging. I look down” here he could have meant two things, that his father was digging crops or that now as an adult Heaney looks down to his father since his father now is the one following him.

   The structure of the poem helps Heaney convey his ideas in a lucid manner. As seen in both ‘Digging’ and ‘Follower’, the author likes using free verse in order to portray his ideas how ever he desires and that also helps diversify his poem from others and to give it a sense of originality. This means he can use any type of rhyme scheme and he can even choose not to have one. Heaney also uses iambic pentameter to give rhythm to the poem, and enjambments to give more importance to specific phrases.

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