38 Total Quotes

Seamus Heaney Quotes

Seamus Heaney
Getting started, keeping going, getting started again - in art and in life, it seems to me this is the essential rhythm not only of achievement but of survival, the ground of convinced action, the basis of self-esteem and the guarantee of credibility in your lives, credibility to yourselves as well as to others.
Seamus Heaney
#Art

Seamus Heaney
It is difficult at times to repress the thought that history is about as instructive as an abattoir; that Tacitus was right and that peace is merely the desolation left behind after the decisive operations of merciless power.
Seamus Heaney
#History

Seamus Heaney
As writers and readers, as sinners and citizens, our realism and our aesthetic sense make us wary of crediting the positive note.
Seamus Heaney
#Irish Poet

Seamus Heaney
Even if the hopes you started out with are dashed, hope has to be maintained.
Seamus Heaney
#Irish Poet #Hope

Seamus Heaney
I may have grown more attentive to the news and more alive to the world history and world-sorrow behind it.
Seamus Heaney
#History

Seamus Heaney
But that citizen's perception was also at one with the truth in recognizing that the very brutality of the means by which the IRA were pursuing change was destructive of the trust upon which new possibilities would have to be based.
Seamus Heaney
#Irish Poet #Perception

Seamus Heaney
The Ireland I now inhabit is one that these Irish contemporaries have helped to imagine.
Seamus Heaney
#Irish Poet #Irish

Seamus Heaney
But even so, none of the news of these world-spasms entered me as terror.
Seamus Heaney
#News

Seamus Heaney
To begin with, I wanted that truth to life to possess a concrete reliability, and rejoiced most when the poem seemed most direct, an upfront representation of the world it stood in for or stood up for or stood its ground against.
Seamus Heaney
#Life

Seamus Heaney
A public expectation, it has to be said, not of poetry as such but of political positions variously approvable by mutually disapproving groups.
Seamus Heaney
#Irish Poet #Expectation

Seamus Heaney
In fact, in lyric poetry, truthfulness becomes recognizable as a ring of truth within the medium itself.
Seamus Heaney
#Irish Poet #Poetry

Seamus Heaney
Whether it be a matter of personal relations within a marriage or political initiatives within a peace process, there is no sure-fire do-it-yourself kit.
Seamus Heaney
#Irish Poet #Marriage

Seamus Heaney
When I first encountered the name of the city of Stockholm, I little thought that I would ever visit it, never mind end up being welcomed to it as a guest of the Swedish Academy and the Nobel Foundation.
Seamus Heaney
#Irish Poet

Seamus Heaney
This temperamental disposition towards an art that was earnest and devoted to things as they are was corroborated by the experience of having been born and brought up in Northern Ireland and of having lived with that place even though I have lived out of it for the past quarter of a century.
Seamus Heaney
#Art

Seamus Heaney
It has as much to do with the energy released by linguistic fission and fusion, with the buoyancy generated by cadence and tone and rhyme and stanza, as it has to do with the poem's concerns or the poet's truthfulness.
Seamus Heaney
#Energy

Seamus Heaney
We want the surprise to be transitive like the impatient thump which unexpectedly restores the picture to the television set, or the electric shock which sets the fibrillating heart back to its proper rhythm.
Seamus Heaney
#Television

Seamus Heaney
Even if the last move did not succeed, the inner command says move again.
Seamus Heaney
#Irish Poet

Seamus Heaney
I credit poetry for making this space-walk possible.
Seamus Heaney
#Irish Poet #Poetry

Seamus Heaney
Then as the years went on and my listening became more deliberate, I would climb up on an arm of our big sofa to get my ear closer to the wireless speaker.
Seamus Heaney
#Irish Poet #Listening

Seamus Heaney
There is risk and truth to yourselves and the world before you.
Seamus Heaney
#Irish Poet #Risk

Seamus Heaney
On the contrary, a trust in the staying power and travel-worthiness of such good should encourage us to credit the possibility of a world where respect for the validity of every tradition will issue in the creation and maintenance of a salubrious political space.
Seamus Heaney
#Power