Sweeney Astray: A Version from the Irish
Sweeney Astray is Seamus Heaney's version of the medieval Irish work Buile Suibne. Its here, Mad Sweeney, undergoes a series of purgatorial adventures after he is cursed by a saint and turned into a bird at the Battle of Moira. Heaney's translation not only restores to us a work of historical and literary importance but offers the genius of one of our greatest living poets to reinforce its claims on the reader of contemporary literature.
"...[B]ut what one remembers most about ''Sweeney Astray'' is the delicate, dramatic balance between pain and praise. The poem is a balanced statement about a tragically unbalanced mind." - The New York Times Book Review Seamus Heaney (1939-2013) received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1995. His poems, plays, translations, and essays include Opened Ground, Electric Light, Beowulf, The Spirit Level, District and Circle, and Finders Keepers. Robert Lowell praised Heaney as the "most important Irish poet since Yeats."
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