Rather than cancel the event, the Folger decided to honor Heaney with a night of literary tributes on April 7 at the Lutheran Church of the Reformation. Among the poets who will read from their work are Eamon Grennan, Paula Meehan, Bernard O’Donoghue, Jane Hirshfield and Frank Bidart, who won the National Book Critics Circle Award for poetry in March. The reading will also include remarks from Joseph Hassett, the author of “W.B. Yeats and the Muses.”
The Honorable Anne Anderson, Ambassador of Ireland, is scheduled to present opening remarks at the Folger tribute. A great fan of her countryman’s verse, she hosted a private tribute to Heaney in November. Sen. Patrick Leahy, Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts, Paul Muldoon, Alice McDermott and others attended what was the new ambassador’s first literary dinner in her residence.
After the reading on April 7, the audience is invited to a reception and book signing across the street at the Folger Shakespeare Library.