“The Given Note” by Seamus Heaney

“The Given Note” by Seamus Heaney (1939-2013) first appeared in the Nobel Prize-winning Irish poet’s second collection, Door into the Dark (1969).  It was the only one of his poems to be read at his funeral. “The Given Note” takes its inspiration from the legend of the fiddler who brought back the Port na bPúcaí (The Fairies’ Tune) from the westernmost of Ireland’s most westernmost islands, the windswept and forbidding Blaskets. This adaptation of the poem into comics was done at the suggestion of Dr. Marco Sonzogni of Victoria University, Wellington.

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12 Responses to “The Given Note” by Seamus Heaney

  1. mickplay says:

    Love this. And thought you might like this music which I think goes exactly with it. The wonderful Kevin Burke with Farrell O’Gara. In m opinion the best ever version of this tune – and weirdly on an old Arlo Guthrie album! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wjWzU3M7J5A&list=PLpV_cCObwCgEQng5Zl–Q6fiGBmQb6iI8&index=1


  2. alice says:

    I can see lots of time spent on illustrating this poem, lots
    Embarassment…the pencil does not seem to have a clue of this notion
    and the pencil would not deliver if you were not ready to fight
    armed with graphite against all and none
    when only appreciation is expressed
    really, this illustrated poem stands out, modifying concepts…it simply stands impressively out


  3. alice says:

    Pencil dancing, possessed. Repetition of movement in various modes. Lovely curls, differently lovely, Also love the shadows, empty or full, and the house. The mad dancing in the house.
    You must have heard the music brought back from nowhere.


    • Pencil dancing, I like that. Perhaps the only kind of dancing I enjoy -and even then I get very nervous and self-conscious on the dance floor of the page. But it’s nice to know that when I let loose somewhat the results are not a complete embarrassment.


  4. Reblogged this on Perth Words… exploring possibilities. and commented:
    I’ve been to the Blasket Islands and these illustrations fit the poem, perfectly.


  5. thebookgator says:

    I particularly like the panels for ‘out of wind off mid-Atlantic’ and ‘rephrases itself into the air.’ Nicely done!


  6. cobalt1968 says:

    Very nicely done.


  7. Marco Vins Della Motta says:

    An exceptional illustration to complement an exceptional poem!!! Remarkable work, Jools!!!


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