Seamus Heaney: Poem summaries and tips for the Leaving Cert English Poetry Exam

By Laura Daly

Listen to our H1 audio notes on the poet Seamus Heaney

My name is Laura Daly, I’m an English teacher from Dublin and I’m going to be taking you through an exam-focused podcast on Seamus Heaney.

There are 13 Heaney poems on the course, which is a lot, so be sure to skip to the ones that your teacher has covered in class.  Remember you need to discuss four in-depth and refer briefly to two more for an H1. The Youtube video below is broken into chapters so you can just focus on the poems you are studying. 

What is covered in this podcast?

I cover a range of different topics in this podcast, such as: 

  • Background to Heaney's life

  • Poetic Influences

  • Themes

  • Key images and language

  • Stylistic features

  • Tone

  • A breakdown of 13 of Heaney's poems

How to use this podcast to learn

I recommend having each poem to hand while you listen to the podcast. You can find all of these poems by looking them up on Google. I have also included the transcript of this podcast so you can take down the notes you find useful.

Have a listen below, or wherever you get your podcasts!

Or if you prefer, you can watch listen to it on Youtube it instead!

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By Laura Daly

An English teacher with over 15 years of experience, Laura teaches at St Benildus College, Co. Dublin. She is also a graduate of UCD, Trinity and taught at the European School of The Hague in the Netherlands.

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