3 Orange Drums

Heaney composes the brash cartoon/poster image of a figure prominent in a Protestant Unionist parade. He allows his dislike of the event and what it stands for to leak out. Its central figure is an overpowering caricature: a drummer whose size and posture are complemented by the bulk and weight of his drum. The vocabulary of volume and weight makes him larger-than-life: balloons…belly … weighs … buckles; the sound he produces is bullying to the ear: thunder/ Grossly. He cuts a paradoxical figure his height extended by his heavy instrument: raised up by what he buckles under. His drumstick is a seasoned rod (‘seasoned’ both in the sense of ‘matured’ and used during the marching season). It indicates the pretext […]