Famous Seamus

Seamus Heaney won the T.S. Eliot Prize with his new collection, District and Circle, but that’s not the really good news. The best thing is that he was interviewed live on the Today programme this morning and he was as sharp as ever. He talked about the stroke he suffered a few months ago, said that he had made a good recovery but was taking nine months off the gruelling round of engagements that comes with winning a Nobel prize. (He didn’t attend the prizegiving ceremony last night and was interviewed by telephone.) The awful thought that his wonderful gravelly, erudite, civilising voice might have been stilled has been banished. Hooray!