Hard Cover. Derry, Ireland: Field Day, 1990. First Edition. Fine / Near Fine.
First edition, signed limited issue, number 499 of 500 copies signed by the author. Publisher's grey cloth, spine stamped in gilt, with errata slip laid-in; original bronze dust jacket featuring painting by Basil Blackshaw to front panel, photo of Heaney by Jerry Bauer to rear flap. Fine book; in a dust jacket with sunning to spine, else fine. A fresh and near fine copy overall. Brandes & Durkan A49a. The Cure at Troy is Seamus Heaney's poetical adaptation of Sophocles' play Philoctetes. Written during the Peloponnesian War, the play takes place during the Trojan War, when Odysseus and Neoptolemus attempt to rescue an injured archer, the titular character Philoctetes. Heaney's version features these lines by the Chorus: History says, Don't hope On this side of the grave. But then, once in a lifetime The longed-for tidal wave Of justice can rise up, And hope and history rhyme. The Cure at Troy is a favorite poem of US President Joe Biden. He recites it often in speeches, most notably at the 2020 Democratic National Convention; playwright Lin-Manuel Miranda performed it at President Biden's inauguration. US President Bill Clinton quoted the poem during the Northern Ireland Peace Process.