Heaney's father, Patrick, born in 1910, was a cattle-dealer with a forty-acre farm in Derry, situated alongside a railway, the now-famous Mossbawn, sacred omphalos of his first-born son's poetry.
this was the omphalos of confusion
Fast-forward to New Guinea in 1942: I had returned to Port Moresby after a stint out in the bush, with a gruesomely suppurating abscess adorning my omphalos , or the seat of my soul.
He goes on to explain that ‘this god is the ancestral exegete for all mankind on such matters and expounds them to them, seated on the omphalos at the centre of the earth.
this was the omphalos of confusion and strife
In New York City, Columbus Circle is the omphalos , yet no building here comes close to exalting that special point in Manhattan space.
Above, on a terrace cut into the mountainside and supported by an unusual masonry wall, stood the temple of Apollo with, at its centre, the omphalos stone symbolically marking the centre of the earth.
When they finally get to New York, the omphalos , the imagined center of their world, Singh dupes them into signing an iniquitous contract that will make him a fortune, and Ormus and Vina slaves for the rest of their careers.
Further legends state that the omphalos at Delphi stands upon the spot where Apollo killed the serpent Python, or upon the chasm through which the waters of Deucalion's flood drained away.
It became the political and spiritual omphalos in which the two key moments of the last 30 political years were determined: the military campaign that internment created and the political struggle to end the war the hunger strike created.