Seamus Heaney Commemoration at the Irish Embassy in Prague

On 29 April 2014, Alison Kelly, Irish Ambassador to the Czech Republic, hosted a poetry evening commemorating the Nobel Prize winning poet Seamus Heaney (1939–2013). The programme was prepared by members of the Centre for Irish Studies, Department of Anglophone Literatures and Cultures of the Faculty of Arts, CU.

After an address by the Ambassador, Prof. Ondřej Pilný, the director of the Centre for Irish Studies, introduced Heaney’s work, life and personality. Prof. Justin Quinn talked about the significance of Polish, Russian and Czech poets for Heaney’s writing, and Dr. Daniel Soukup outlined the links between Heaney’s translation work and his own poetry. A selection of Heaney’s poems was read by Prof. Quinn, and their translations by Dr. Soukup.

In 2002, Heaney gave a poetry reading at the Faculty of Arts, CU, and he visited Prague once again in 2010. On both occasions, he talked to a number of CU FA teachers and students. Those who met him still remember how willingly he dedicated his time and attention to everyone who wanted to discuss poetry with him.