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Finders Keepers: Selected Prose 1971-2001 Paperback – April 16, 2003
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Long regarded as one of Northern Ireland's premier contemporary poets, this volume shows us that Heaney has a sharp critical eye as well, giving us probing analyses of his literary mentors (such as William Wordsworth, Robert Burns, and W.B. Yeats), European poets (Edwin Muir, Philip Larkin, and Ted Hughes to name but a few), and other prominent European and American poets (T.S. Eliot, Czeslaw Milosz, Sylvia Plath). Additionally, Heaney includes pieces on the writing process and his evolution as a writer that are insightful and engaging. In "Recent Poetry from Northern Ireland," Heaney describes what the poet sets out to achieve:
In that liberated moment when the lyric discovers its buoyant completion, when the timeless formal pleasure comes to its fullness and exhaustion, in those moments of self-justification and self-obliteration the poet makes contact with the plane of consciousness where he is at once intensified in his being and detached from his predicaments.
Whether you're a fan of Heaney's poems or not, Finders Keepers: Selected Prose 1971-2001 is an excellent critical resource--one into which it is well worth digging. --Michael Ferch --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
Heaney's aim in this collection of prose writings (some have been previously published and some are lectures) is to "celebrate and take possession" of poetry's excitement and exuberance. Each piece is autobiographical, in that his approach is not strictly the performance of formal literary criticism, but is rather the creative sojourn a poet can take into the depths of his own craft, to call the poetic spirit home. As he says, his central preoccupations are: How should a poet properly live and write? What is his relationship to be to his own voice, his own place, his literary heritage and his contemporary world?
Heaney's leading article is "Mossbawn," which describes the County Derry in the 1940's--as an 'omphalos' or navel which marks the center of the world--whereby one gets the sense that Heaney is a young Stephen Dedalus attempting to locate himself in Ireland, his community, and the world at large. His sentences are rich and carefully worded to evoke just the proper provincial image. He talks about his first forays in reading literature, rhymes, and the formidable Byron and Keats.
The next piece, "from Feeling Into Words" talks about the craft of writing poetry--his "Digging"--lines from Wordsworth. The next articles in Section I are interesting and special--on T.S.Read more ›