As part of our english we had to choose a poem written by Seamus Heaney and write a personal response to it. The poem I chose was 'Follower'. I chose this poem because it is showing what Heaney's past life was like. It shows the relationship between him and his father.
In the first few stanzas I feel that in Heaney's eyes his father is very powerful and 'an expert', 'his shoulders globed like a full sail strung between the shafts and the furrow'. Whereas Heaney was a clumsy child and 'fell sometimes on the polished sod'. His dad would then carry him 'on his back.'
I gather from this poem that Heaney wanted to be like his father and follow in his footsteps when he was older 'I wanted to grow up and plough' He really looked up to his father with admiration like most children do! But i get the feeling that Heaney was quite sad, 'all I ever did was follow in his broad shadow' ' He felt as though he was 'a nuisance, tripping, falling, yapping always'. When he says 'broad shadow' its as though Heaney is living his life in his father's shadow.
In the very last sentence ' but today it was my father who keeps stumbling behind me' shows how the poem suddenly changes from when Heaney was following his father, to his father following him. The role is reversed. That is my personal response to 'Follower' by Seamus Heaney!
|from google images.|