"In his lecture, Seamus recalled the story of St. Kevin kneeling and praying at Glendalough with his arms stretched out in the form of a cross.
'A blackbird mistook his outstretched hand for some kind of roost and swooped down upon it, laid a clutch of eggs in it and proceeded to nest in it as if it were the branch of a tree,” Seamus told the audience in Stockholm. “Then, overcome with pity and constrained by his faith to love the life in all creatures great and small, Kevin stayed immobile for hours and days and nights and weeks, holding out his hand until the eggs hatched and the fledglings grew wings, true to life if subversive of common sense, at the intersection of natural process and the glimpsed ideal, at one and the same time a signpost and a reminder. Manifesting that order of poetry where we can at last grow up to that which we stored up as we grew.'”
Seamus Heaney: Walking on air against his better judgment, di Kevin Cullen, The Boston Globe, 30 agosto 2013.