National Poetry Day

A big thank-you to everyone who contributed some of their favourite poetry to share today. I have reproduced everything I received in the format in which it arrived. I hope you all find something to your taste:

   

Phenomenal Woman

    Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size
But when I start to tell them,
They think I’m telling lies.
I say,
It’s in the reach of my arms
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.
I walk into a room
Just as cool as you please,
And to a man,
The fellows stand or
Fall down on their knees.
Then they swarm around me,
A hive of honey bees.
I say,
It’s the fire in my eyes,
And the flash of my teeth,
The swing in my waist,
And the joy in my feet.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.Men themselves have wondered
What they see in me.
They try so much
But they can’t touch
My inner mystery.
When I try to show them
They say they still can’t see.
I say,
It’s in the arch of my back,
The sun of my smile,
The ride of my breasts,
The grace of my style.
I’m a womanPhenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.Now you understand
Just why my head’s not bowed.
I don’t shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing
It ought to make you proud.
I say,
It’s in the click of my heels,
The bend of my hair,
the palm of my hand,
The need of my care,
‘Cause I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.Maya Angelou

…………………………………………………………………………….

Let Me Die a Youngman’s Death

Let me die a youngman’s death
not a clean and inbetween
the sheets holy water death
not a famous-last-words
peaceful out of breath death

When I’m 73
and in constant good tumour
may I be mown down at dawn
by a bright red sports car
on my way home
from an all night party

Or when I’m 91
with silver hair
and sitting in a barber’s chair
may rival gangsters
with hamfisted tommy guns burst in
and give me a short back and insides

Or when I’m 104
and banned from the Cavern
may my mistress
catching me in bed with her daughter
and fearing for her son
cut me up into little pieces
and throw away every piece but one

Let me die a young man’s death
not a free from sin tiptoe in
candle wax and waning death
not a curtains drawn by angels borne
‘what a nice way to go’ death 

Roger McGough

……………………………………………………………………………

No title

There once were three men

Who had an idea

To build a boat

To go far and near

They went to Arabia, even Australia

But the funny thing was

They never came here.

Now, you may find that strange, as the boat was built here

In this old lighthouse

Off the coast of ‘ampsheer

But that is the mystery that no one can solve

Cos no one was here

So no one was told.

Steevie Watson

……………………………………………………..

“I Was Born Different”

 Some people question,

While others walk away.

Some people stare,

And let others snicker.

I was born different!

 

Some people talk

And others turn heads.

Some people point.

Others just laugh.

I was born different!

 

My fingers don’t straighten

And elbows are bent.

My ankles are weak

And my back is curved.

I was born different!

 

I’ve had therapy since infancy:

With splints on my wrists,

A cast on my foot,

And thick glasses covering my eyes.

I was born different!

 

I never had many friends.

I used to be shy,

But not any more.

I can talk up a storm.

I was born different!

 

Oh how I love to read and write!

I’m a Special Olympics’ athlete.

Figure skate no more;

Now have bowling and track

And basketball too!

Just look at my medals!

So what if I was born different!

Deanna C. Dilley

…………………………………………..

http://www.sapphyr.net/largegems/theawakening.htm

………………………………………………………………

1,1 was a racehorse

2,2 was one too

1,1, won one race

And 2, 2, won one too

Anonymous

………………………………………………

Smiling is infectious

You catch it like the flu

When someone smiled at me today

I started smiling too

I walked around the corner

And someone saw me grin

When he smiled I realised

I had passed it on to him

I thought about the smile

And then realised its worth

A single smile like mine

Could travel round the earth

So if you feel a smile begin

Don’t leave it undetected

Start an epidemic

And get the world infected.

…………………………………………………………………………….

  Still I Rise
 
 

 

   You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may trod me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I’ll rise.
Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
‘Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I’ll rise.Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops.
Weakened by my soulful cries.Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don’t you take it awful hard
‘Cause I laugh like I’ve got gold mines
Diggin’ in my own back yard.You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I’ll rise.Does my sexiness upset you?
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I’ve got diamonds
At the meeting of my thighs?Out of the huts of history’s shame
I rise
Up from a past that’s rooted in pain
I rise
I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.
Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
I rise
Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear
I rise
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
I rise
I rise
I rise. Maya Angelou

……………………………………………………….

A Poppy

We went into a village where violets had just broken out.
Snipers were exchanging samphire,
and there were scenes of carnation everywhere.
I saw someone running with a bunch of live geraniums.
Suddenly there was a burst of chrysanthemum,
and honeysuckle crackled along the hedgerows.
Children were covered in crocus and bluebells;
there were old men waving ancient ivy.
Those unable to arm themselves with daffodils
made do with tulips, cyclamen, anything they could lay their hands on.
Then we heard that a buttercup had landed on the hospital.
We rushed to the scene: patients were emerging, dahlia and lilac,
some with periwinkle or lesser celandine.
It was jasmine. All I could think was “Is there no myrtle?
When will common hawthorn prevail?”
But there was nothing we could do but willow and broom.
By the end of the day there were hundreds lying on makeshift beds of roses.

         Lamium,
         Pyracantha, Euphorbia gorgonis,
         Viola tricolor, Aconitum napellus,
         Amaranthus caudatus,
         Yucca aloifolia, Yucca gloriosa,
         Salix babylonica,
         Artemisia.
*

And afterwards the generals awarded themselves petals.

* Deadnettle, Firethorn, Gorgon’s head, Heartsease, Helmet flower, Love-lies-bleeding, Spanish bayonet, Spanish dagger, Weeping willow, Wormwood

Peter Howard

http://peterhoward.org/flash/poppy.htm

If

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too:
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;
If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim,
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same:.
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build’em up with worn-out tools

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings,
And never breathe a word about your loss:
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on!”

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much:
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!

Rudyard Kipling

…………………………………………………………………..

Porridge

Why is there no monument
To Porridge in our land?
If it’s good enough to eat,
It’s good enough to stand!

On a plinth in London
A statue we should see
Of Porridge made in Scotland
Signed, “Oatmeal, O.B.E.”
(By a young dog of three)

 Spike Milligan

………………………………………………….

The Leader

I wanna be the leader
I wanna be the leader
Can I be the leader?
Can I? I can?
Promise? Promise?
Yippee I’m the leader
I’m the leader
OK what shall we do?

Roger McGough

…………………………………………………….

A Nursery Rhyme, as it might have been written by TS Eliot

Because time will not run backwards

Because time

Because time will not run

Hickory dickory

In the last minute of the first hour

I saw the mouse ascend the ancient timepiece

Claws whispering like wind in dry hyacinths

One o’clock

The street lamp said,

‘Remark the mouse that races towards the carpet’.

And the unstilled wheel still turning

Hickory dickory

Hickory dickory

Dock

Wendy Cope

……………………………………………….

Autumn

Autumn smells like smoky bonfires

Autumn tastes like jacket potatoes

Autumn sounds like rustling leaves

Autumn feels like a crisp breeze

Autumn looks like a harvest of red , rust and green.

Anne-Marie Child

………………………………………………………

There was an ALS tutor called Paula

Who wished that she could grow taller

She was frequently stretched

To the point that she etched

A picture of a big hairy mauler

Paula Hayes

……………………………………………………………………

The Most Rewarding Job

 

If you can hold your students when round about

There is so much more for them to see and do,

If you can trust yourself when others doubt –

But wish they’d understand your point of view;

If you can plan – and be ahead of planning

And being talked about, speak boldly face to face

Or being complained about, not become complaining

But hide the hurt with dignity and grace…

 

If you can laugh and rise above the crassness,

If you can shrug it off and just be kind,

If you can meet incompetence and daftness

Then say: ‘Oh what the heck!’ and ‘Never mind.’

If you can bear to hear the words you’ve spoken

Twisted by those who play a shallow game,

Or stand by, as all those promises get broken

And you’re asked to carry on, yet hold the blame;

 

If you can nurture growth and then take measure,

If you realise your value on this earth

The best of all your memories will be pleasure

To think you’ve made your mark, for what it’s worth.

If you can be supported and looked after

Not ignored and treated badly with disdain,

If you can forge relationships with laughter

And mutual respect, there’s much to gain…

 

If you can motivate your students in their learning

And know that you’ve encouraged them to think

And changed their lives for ever by discerning –

You’ve led them to the well and made them drink.

If you can influence their hearts and minds and voices

And help their spirits soar up high, far-reaching,

You’ve carried out the best of all life’s choices:

Supporting students, mentoring them and teaching.

 

 

 

© Chris Scholes (with apologies to Rudyard Kipling)

…………………………………………………………….

Wet Pants

 

That knowing sting

is here again,

 

with gnawing dread

what is instead,

 

go behind a car

but, where, how far,

 

can I make it

no, not a chance,

 

quick make a break

before its too late,

 

the loo in the cafe

is far too naff,

 

by this point tho

any place I’ll go,

 

the twinge, the pain

wish relief to gain,

 

the panic, the fear

trickles like a tear,

 down my two legs

so warm it spreads,

 

Relief mixed with Grief.

 

 Ruth Messer 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements