Robert Frost and Northern Irish Poetry

Synopsis

In this incisive and highly readable study, Rachel Buxton offers a much-needed assessment of Frost's significance for Northern Irish poetry of the past half-century. Drawing upon a diverse range of previously unpublished archival sources, including juvenilia, correspondence, and drafts ofpoems, Robert Frost and Northern Irish Poetry takes as its particular focus the triangular dynamic of Frost, Seamus Heaney, and Paul Muldoon. Buxton explores the differing strengths which each Irish poet finds in Frost's work: while Heaney is drawn primarily to the Frost persona and to the "sound ofsense", it is the studied slyness and wryness of the American's poetry, the complicating undertow, which Muldoon values. This appraisal of Frost in a non-American context not only enables a fuller appreciation of Heaney's and Muldoon's poetry but also provides valuable insight into the nature oftrans-national and trans-generational poetic influence. Engaging with the politics of Irish-American literary connections, while providing a subtle analysis of the intertextual relationships between these three key twentieth-century poets, Robert Frost and Northern Irish Poetry is a pioneering work.