1. The Pen Rests

    Irish Poet Seamus Heaney Dies

    FILE--This is a 1991 Harvard University handout photo of the Irish poet Seamus Heaney. Heaney, whose lyrical works portray the pain of sectarian strife and the joy of growing up in a Roman Catholic farming family, won the 1995 Nobel Prize in literature on Thursday Oct. 5, 1995. The Swedish Academy that awards the prize lauded Heaney for poems ``of lyrical beauty and ethical depth, which exalt everyday miracles and the living past.''  Heaney is a visiting professor at Harvard University in Cambridge, Mass. (AP Photo/Joe Wrinn)

    Joe Wrinn/AP,JOE WRINN

    Irish poet and Nobel laureate Seamus Heaney died at a hospital in Dublin after a short illness. He was 74. The eldest of nine children, Heaney was born on a farm in Northern Ireland and went on to become the most celebrated poet since W. B. Yeats, penning 13 poetry collections and two plays, as well as books on the writing process. He won the Nobel Prize in 1995 and later the prestigious Forward poetry prize, among other awards. Tributes quickly began pouring in through news and social-media sites, many quoting a line from "Digging," the much-loved first poem of his first collection, Death of a Naturalist: “Between my finger and my thumb, The squat pen rests; snug as a gun.”

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