Father and Son (for Eminem and Seamus Heaney).

by Aidan Andrew Dun

Unholyland is full of the Palestinian rap-culture of the West Bank, so this poem, Father And Son, written a few years ago in response to Seamus Heaney’s generous praising of Eminem, maybe merits an airing. Partly, I suppose, because Eminem is famously fatherless, I felt the praise would mean a lot to the bad-boy from Detroit. Anyway, I dashed down these lines as a reflection of those feelings, warm as April sunrays…


Rare to see lightning
arc across generations.
It seems sometimes,
thin lips tightening,
no interconnections,
rhymes, exist any more.
It’s all opposite-teams,
splinter-groups, sections.
No-one’s that sure now
of anyone else’s dreams.
Who changes directions?
Rejections drive apart,
we stand here divided,
hold new elections:
all one-sided,
throw a loaded dice.

Then through blue,
electricity crosses
vast gulfs, mind to mind.
Cultures have coincided,
two contraries collided,
fire and ice combined.
If this happens once
it can happen twice!
So say as you find,
leave the dead behind.
Through new skies,
above dark lies,
in golden weather,
talking together,
father and son
walking on as one.