Seamus Heaney - Moyulla - Poetry Analysis


Moyulla   In dialogue with Dennis O’Driscoll’s in Stepping Stones (p. 406)  Heaney referred to ‘Moyulla’ as ‘a praise poem but it’s keenly aware of ‘green’ issues; and to a degree, its drift is also political’ The 4-poem sequence contrasts ecological decline with former glory; Evidence of pollution sits alongside a host of female symbols: river, lover, dam; the ideal relationship is loaded with sensual overtones. 1. A ‘before-time’ of purity recalled from those days when the river flowed fast black-lick and quick beneath the willows; remembered for her chill breath the coldness off her a river chill as familiar to him (and addressed to his female companion) as the coldness off you,/ your cheek and your clothes/ and your moves – when you come in from gardening. Moyola, a self-contained ecological gem  in the swim of herself, that swarmed with river life and was rich in fertility with pollen […read more….]