Wordsworth’s Skates

  Heaney responds to an exhibit once worn by a celebrated Romantic poet in a piece about celebrity, professional respect and legacy. It offers insights into the poetic process. On a visit to Wordsworth’s Dove Cottage near Grasmere the British Lake District, Heaney latches onto a literal and metaphorical star in the window. His initial idea takes on poetic a poetic charge that will lift Wordsworth beyond the reach of gravity As he studies the exhibit he allows the external sounds he hears (Slate scrape. Bird or branch?) to act as  a stepping-stone to an ice-bound Lake District around 1800 and the sounds of sharp blades cutting into the smooth, frozen  Lakeland surface (the whet and scud of steel on […]