Essay - Churning Day - Seamus Heaney on the Surface, the Poem...


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Churning Day - Seamus Heaney

On the surface, the poem by Nobel Prize Laureate Seamus Heaney called Churning Day, is a wonderful journey into the past, into the old ways of making butter when technology and the corporate world were far from becoming part of Europe. The poem ***** both a history lesson and a reflection of Heaney's agricultural upbringing. It is also in a very real way a testament to his sharp eye ***** attentive ears towards the culture ***** rural Ireland in which he was steeped in and "plunged in" - like poetry itself.

Because the structure of the poem uses enjambment the entire length, Heaney k*****d of gives the reader a sense of the movement ***** the h*****s churning, moving, continu*****lly. When you make butter, ***** don't stop for a while and rest; you keep turning, churning, and ***** ***** has that same continuous motion as well.

In the poem it is clear that ***** sees ***** boyhood old-world family lifestyle as a metaphor, and all ***** things that were ***** of those experiences are building blocks for his storytelling. But he shows how highly intelligent he is by ***** strategic use of words - just enough descriptiveness and emotion. Still, ***** does not let the tools ***** poetry overpower the poem. As a poet he ***** the license to pour forth with images ***** metaphors, but he handles this poem ***** grace, the ***** as his family handled the chores of ***** food with grace and deliberation.

***** ***** lecture to the Nobel Foundation, Heaney explains that he was ***** "eldest child of an every*****growing family." That ***** was crowded together in three rooms ***** a thatched farmhouse. The experience, he explained, was intimate ***** "physical" *****d "creaturely" - which suggests that he and his family were a bit like shrewd ***** productive animals, living off the land and cooperating with one another the ***** ***** natural world operates. Rabbits have their communities and when babies are born, they become part of ***** little *****; ***** the same with mice, and ants, and squirrels. He *****n't have to mention ***** species because he has given the reader and the listener the word "*****," ***** that is enough for the active mind ***** take it from there. Nature ***** its way, and life moves forward because of rituals and duties.

For Heaney, everything that happened in h***** family life, ***** in the surroundings and materials of his existence, caused something else to happen. This is the substance of h***** poem, as *****, because eac***** action causes another *****, or a reaction - a product - b*****ed on the initial acti*****. And ***** the poet who is skillful in the economy of *****s, the ***** ********** trained to observe ***** pragmatism of those reactions and results, just like the young eyes of the poet witness the ***** being made from the fresh milk of the cow.

First, a look ********** his Nobel ***** ***** that in his boyhood,

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