Tuesday, April 1, 2008
The aspect of the form of Seamus Heaney's Digging that popped out at me is the number of lines in each stanza. The number of lines in each stanze is 2, 3, 4, 5, 2, 8, 4, 3. This appears to me to follow intensity of the poem. As the stanzas get larger through the first half of the poem, it gains in intensity. It picks up as his father's work is described more and more, and then there is a brief moment of reflection in the two-line stanza. The moment is taken to transition from the father to the grandfather. The poem then picks right back up in intensity to describe the grandfathers work. It then tapers off into a tone similar to the one found at the beginning.