Mid Term Break By Seamus Heaney Essay

1998 words - 8 pages

Mid-Term Break by Seamus Heaney

Looking first at the poem written by Seamus Heaney it portrays a very
powerful and clear message. I guess that it is set in Ireland, he
gives clues of this throughout the poem and as he is originally from
Ireland I think that it is a safe presumption to make. Mid-Term break
an incredibly sad poem. In Mid term break Seamus Heaney's tells of the
tragic death of his younger brother, who was sadly killed. Seamus
Heaney describes in the poem of what he did that day when he's younger
brother was killed. The stanza begins with the "morning" in line one,
but it is two o'clock in line three, showing that hour have passed in
waiting. The second stanza begins with the image of Heaney's father
"crying". Heaney's father appears to be a strong man of few words, so
having him crying causes a powerful emotion in the reader. The effect
that his father crying has on Heaney is also written, he says how his
father had 'Always taken funerals in his stride' this gives the clear
message that this funeral is different, devastating for even the
seemingly stronger members of Heaney's family. Heaney skilfully takes
the reader with him as he enters the house through the porch as we
meet his father; "Big Jim Evans"; the baby in its pram; the old men
gathered in the room; and finally Heaney's mother coughing out "angry
tearless sighs", which show that she was hiding her true emotions.
When Heaney writes of "Big Jim Evans" it has an almost hidden meaning.
There seems to be and invisible emphasis on the word, 'Big' making it
stick out in your mind. I think that Heaney does this on purpose; the
word 'Big' brings the image of a strong, tough man I feel we are meant
to translate it to mean that if 'Big Jim Evans' says that it was a
hard blow that something extremely bad must have happened. In the few
line of the poem alone we are seeing a mass of very different
emotions. The first opening lines give the impression that Heaney is
almost bored, he says how he 'counts the bells knelling classes to a
close' and how he had 'sat all morning in the sick bay.' Before his
neighbours came to collects him. He next moves abruptly to say how he
met his father crying in the porch. Here is another emotion,
devastation. Also when he says how his father is always strong and
collected at funerals you can almost pick up on his surprise to see
his father in such a distressing state. He goes on to talk of 'Big Jim
Evans' and his statement. I feel that Jim Evans expresses deep sadness
and woe. He then writes of another emotion, one quite different to the
ones identified earlier, joy and happiness, 'The baby cooed and
laughed and rocked the pram.' The next strong emotion described is
that of his mother, '…coughed angry tearless sighs.' It is a difficult
to interpret this emotion, though I do feel that...

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