Essay about Father Roles Heaney

875 Words 4 Pages
Father Roles Heaney Father Roles

There are many factors that will shape a young boy’s life, but possibly none more important than the role of that boy’s father. Seamus Heaney and Theodore Roethke both have shown the importance of the father role in their poems “Digging” and “My Papas Waltz.” Although the roles of the fathers in these poems were different, the respect and admiration shown by their sons is one in the same. Weather it is Heaney’s father digging under his window, or Roehtke’s father dancing him around as a little boy, the love shown in these two poems, shows a direct relation on the lives they shared with their fathers.

Heaney’s poem, “Digging” showed that while the boy still loved his father, he did not wish to
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Corked sloppily with paper.” This shows that while Heaney decided not to follow in his fathers footsteps, he loved and cared for his father regardless (Glover 543). Overall, Heaney’s love for his father was a powerful factor in his deciding to become a writer.

Roethke’s peom, “My Papas Waltz”, shows us a completely different relationship among the father and son. In the opening line, we read “The whisky on your breath/could make a small boy dizzy;” this, to some, arises suspicion as to weather this is a happy dance, or a violent one. Many will debate over weather or not this represents a happy time or a violent relationship, but this is further clarified when Roethke writes “But I hung on like death” this shows that the boy was in fact having fun dancing with his father (Magill 1453). You can sense the anger in the mother as you read “My mothers countenance/could not unfrown itself.” This shows that despite the mothers feelings of anger towards the dance, the son was enjoying it, so they went on (Malkoff 344). The last two lines of the poem further illustrate the boys love for the dance with his father; “Then waltzed me off to bed/still clinging to your shirt.” This shows that after a long day of work, the boys father would come home and have a drink, and then waltz Theodore around the kitchen. The love between Roethke and his father is shown throughout the poem, and can be seen in many ways, some wish to view
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