2 literally annoying articles


(poetry diary 22) I’ve recently been feeling annoyed over this news article:

According to the dictionary, “literally” now also means “figuratively” – Dana Coleman –Salon – August 22, 2016

So for bemusement I went looking for poems about the word “literally.” I didn’t find any that hit me, but I was amused to find an article about a man who took one of Seamus Heaney’s poems too literally….

In 2010 a man obsessed with telling the world about the horrors of bullfighting travelled through two days of rain to protest one of Heaney’s readings.

Heaney once wrote a poem, “Tate’s Avenue,”  which mentioned the sport. He also once compared W.H. Auden to a bullfighter. The protester found these things upsetting.

A statement from Heaney said: “I do not support bullfighting and anyone who draws such an inference from my writing is totally mistaken.”

Read more:

The danger of taking poetry too literally – Richard Alleyne – The Telegraph – August 30, 2010

Not the brown and fawn car rug, that first one
Spread on sand by the sea but breathing land-breaths,
Its vestal folds unfolded, its comfort zone
Edged with a fringe of sepia-coloured wool tails.

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