Seamus Heaney - Miracle - Poetry Analysis


Miracle Heaney adapts a New Testament miracle as a tribute to those who came to his aid in crisis. Having described his impotence as a stricken stretcher-case he salutes the initial human support-chain of friends whose efforts helped bring about the miracle of recovery. He is commemorating not the beneficiary of a biblical miracle (the one who takes up his bed and walks) but, rather, his own ‘stretcher-bearers’ (the ones) whose solidarity took up the challenge however daunting of moving him: Their shoulders numb, the ache and stoop deeplocked/ In their backs … the stretcher handles/ Slippery with sweat.They spared no effort (without let-up) to deliver a sick man for healing despite the logistical problems: strapped on … made tiltable… raised… lowered. Heaney urges us to be mindful of those like those who ferried him who, their job done, could only stand and wait, their hands still suffering the burn of paid-out ropes, left with thelightheadedness of physical exertion and their incredulity at having managed […read more….]