Anything can Happen by Seamus Heaney

Listen to the poem being read by the poet himself

Anything can Happen

What feelings does it arise in you?

Account for the reason why this poem was read on that particular date. Use quotations.

Here there is another poem about the same theme:

Upon 9/11
by Matthew Abuelo


a nation under siege.
The syndicates waiting the wings
from the east,
Bring the gods of New York to their knees
with the sound of a mean freight train that slices
through the silent brain of night.
Is this the voice of the great powers?
The western bankers?
The eastern sand soldiers of their ancestors      that call us back to the night?

Is this the voice of the great families?
those Robber Barons
the Rockefellers,
the Bin Ladens,
The Fords,
the Mackeys,
the Windsors.
“What ever you do, don’t let them know what you’re doing. For God’s sake, don’t let the people know what’s happening.”
OK, you of the great powers,
the world bankers,
the oil syndicates,
the great eastern czars,
You who fed on the brains and souls that are not your and never will be yours.
Is this the voice of the great world powers?
“And whatever you do, don’t let the contra deals leak out.”


Down in the veins of America,
Anthrax breeds in rivers of sadness and endless news.
Did you know the undivided mind is the undivided perception that pulses along the Medulla Oblongata up through the cerebral cortex
with bitterness and rage?

What calls your attention?

Who are the people mentioned? What does the writer mean by alluding to them?

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2 Responses to Anything can Happen by Seamus Heaney

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  2. 1) Impotence, because the writer makes an allusion to the fall of the twins towers, and this was a very sad episode which ended the life of a lot of innocent citizens. Also, it helps you to symphatised with the harsh reality many americans were put trough with this.
    2) It was read on september 11 th 2011, this was a tribute to the fall of the twins towers; “Anything can happen, the tallest towers” “Be overturned, those in high places daunted” “Swoops, making the air gasp, tearing the crest off one”
    3) What calls our attention about the poem is that we are used to read old poems that were written in the past and allude to something that was not part of our reality, but after reading this we understood the feelings the writer wants to communicate us. And we have lived this tragic episode so is more real to us.
    4) Bin laden, Robben Baron, the world bankers, the oil syndicates. He makes and allusion and confirms that he is talking the September 11th event.

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