Essay in honour of Brian FrielBoth Seamus Heaney and Brian Friel have died since the publication of Spelling It Out.It was, in 2009, as Seamus Heaney wrote ‘a personal essay in honour of our greatest playwright, Brian Friel, on his 80th birthday.'It includes tender recollection and highly critical observation.‘... I thought it worth the risk to spell out some of the things we know and love and value about Brian by focussing on the letters of his name...'
Revised edition, with a new preface by Seamus Heaney A heartbreaking and measured report of grief following the death of Ursula, the two-and-a-half-year-old daughter of Jan Kochanowski (1530-1584), meticulously and marvelously translated by Seamus Heaney and Stanislaw Baranczak, former colleagues at Harvard University.'a sequence of poems which occupy as cherished and foundational a place in Polish literature as Shakespeare's sonnets in English... the matter of the work is weighted with pain but the mode of expression is utterly buoyant.'— Seamus Heaney'Jan Kochanowski, a great Polish Renaissance poet, was a contemporary of the French poet Ronsard and a little older than Edmund Spenser and Sir Philip Sidney in England. His presence belies foggy notions common in the West about a barbaric Eastern Europe. And yet the Renaissance literature of Poland is virtually unknown in the West because of the lack of translations. The Laments of Kochanowski should be ranked with the world classics. There were some attempts to translate Laments into English in the past, but now something has happened which allows the English-speaking reader to have nearly direct access to this work: namely, the cooperation of two excellent poets, Professor Stanislaw Baranczak of Harvard and Seamus Heaney. That team translated Laments, preserving its metres and rhymes. It is a rare accomplishment, which brings joy to me as an inheritor of Kochanowski's language and of the Renaissance tradition.'— Czeslaw Milosz
Thomson, David, Sanderson, Stewart, and Heaney, Seamus
Scots--Folklore, Seals (Animals)--Folklore, and Irish--Folklore
Introduced by Seamus Heaney. David Thomson?s travels in the Gaelic world of the Hebrides and the west coast of Ireland brought him into contact with a people whose association with the sea and its fertile lore runs deep. They told of men rescued by seals in stormy seas, of babies suckled by seal-mothers, and of men who took seal-women for wives? stories centuries old, handed down to them by their forefathers. These mysterious and fascinating legends retain their spell-binding enchantment through the luminous quality of David Thomson?s prose. From an early age, he was fascinated by the mysterious interaction between man and the sea. In the Selkie legends he found the perfect expression of a Celtic world where truth and fiction intertwine, and his book is a window onto that vanished world.?The People of the Sea survives not as a period piece but as a poetic achievement... readers will be carried away on successive waves of pleasure... these stories have an irresistible holistic beauty.? Seamus Heaney?A splendid resurrection of a life that has almost vanished.? Daily Telegraph?I know of few books which so ably open a window on the Gaelic scene today or which so faithfully reflect the mind, vigour and courtesy of its people... Pounds on the imagination like surf on a reef.? Observer