The Errand

The second of  consecutive poems in which Heaney recalls incidents involving his deceased parents in particular his father. Heaney had left the family home (after seven years of boarding-school experience in Derry) to go to university after which he worked, married, travelled and brought up children in locations distant from his roots. His memories of those early days are crystal-clear. The child Heaney shows an early flash of the intelligence he will demonstrate abundantly as schoolboy and scholar: the father gives his eager-beaver son a job he wants done without delay: ‘On you go now! Run, son, like the devil’ ; he is to pass on an instruction: ‘tell your mother to try/ To find me a bubble for the […]