Critical analysis of “Casting And Gathering” by Seamus Heaney


Poem is dedicated to Ted Hughes who is a fisher man and friend of Seamus Heaney.

Definition of the title


Casting means throwing/ put a side. It also refers to right hand side political party “ The Capitalists” their motto was “individual is everything”.


Gathering means to collect/ harvest. It also refers to left hand side political party “ The Socialists” their motto was “individual belong to society”.

Political purposes

This poem shows the conflict between two political parties Capitalists and Socialists. The purpose of both the parties is same as the well being of humanity. Seamus Heaney used the words Hush and lush means fear of war and hope of progress. Due to the conflict between two parties peoples feels the fear of war and have the hope of progress. Seamus Heaney Writes that They can compromise on their action or to make their commitment better they escape for the time being and makes new strategies.

Push and pull effect

According to Andrew Boobier that two people ( The poet and his friend Ted Hughes a fisher man) have different natures, contrary impulses yet be united in common bond of mutuality and respect for each other as fisherman and poet.

Didactic purpose

Respect the differences of each other.


This poem is consist of five stanzas of four line and one opening line. There is no rhyme scheme. Each line of about ten syllables (not strictly follow). It is written in blank verse and simple language is used.

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