Literary Analysis Of Seamus Heaney's Blackberry-Picking And Digging

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In his poems Blackberry-Picking and Digging, Seamus Heaney unveils many events of his childhood along with his feelings about his past. His emotions are paradoxical and simple - he is overjoyed at first, and then becomes very sad and depressed towards the end. Such ironical emotions have an impact on the readers and it also depicts how life could be simple and complicated at the same time - as all the straightforward feelings come together, what is left in the end is something very complex. Literary devices such as alliteration, the use of structure, and the engagement of senses are used to communicate Heaney’s contradictory feelings about his youth. In the poem Digging, feelings of admiration and regret are shown, whilst in Blackberry-Picking, there are the two emotions of excitement and disappointment.

Heaney portrays feelings of pure joy just like any other boy in Blackberry-Picking. A more detailed description is made of waiting for the day until the berries will ripen, which makes the stanzas differ in length. When “a glossy purple clot” appears “among others, red, green,” Heaney starts to get ready, going around, calling his friends to join him. Blackberry-picking was an occasional treat during that time, and this is indicated by the infrequent rhymes in the poem. Heaney was so excited that he even noticed the slightest change in colour - he had waited so long for the day. The use of colour - “red, green” - hints the change of season as well as the contrast of
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