When I was a boy I did not rate poetry highly. Actually it was only
when I became interested in computing that I realized that poets share with
programmers a desire to get the maximum effect with the minimum of words.
Also computer programmers and poets share the feeling of having thoughts in
their heads that they want to put down on paper.
Great poets have a feeling for 'now'. They are able to put into
words the feelings of an event, whether it's a battle, a love affair or a
mundane walk in the park. While great poems come to be revered, they
were mostly written as throw away lines. It's just that some poems remain
resonant years after they were first penned.
My point: great poems may be written now, it's just that we not recognise
greatness because have not heard them often enough, or allowed sufficient
time for their ideas to sink in.
Themes From Previous Years' National Poetry Day
2014 2013: Water, water everywhere 2012: Stars 2011: Games 2010: Home 2009: Heroes and Heroines 2008: Work 2007: Dreams
2006: Identity 2005: The Future 2004: Food 2003: Britain 2002:
Celebration 2001: Journeys 2000: Fresh Voices 1999: Song Lyrics
A Poem Seen on London's Underground by W.B. Yeats
He wishes for his Cloths of Heaven
Had I the heavens' embroidered cloths, Enwrought with golden and
silver light, The blue and the dim and the dark cloths Of night and
light and the half-light, I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams; I have spread my dreams under
your feet; Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.
W. B. Yeats (1865 - 1939)
A Modern Poem
What Is A Grandma?
Someone to sigh with Someone to cry with, To be through smiles and
woes Someone to talk with Someone to walk with Wherever a path in
life goes, A Grandma is a Treasure, An all around pleasure, To
share with, to care with, and love Wrapped with affection, And made to
perfection, A Grandma is a gift from above
International National Poetry Day
Since 1996 the USA dedicates the whole of the month of April to poetry. Meanwhile in New Zealand they have their own National Poetry
Day in July.
In recent years both Will and Guy's family have been faced with losing
loved ones. Naturally, we are aware that bereavement is as common an
occurrence as births.
Close family members have shared with us their feeling that poems such as
the two produced here are helpful in coping with loss.
We share them with you on World Poetry Day.
You can shed tears that she is gone Or you can smile because she has
lived. You can close your eyes and pray that she'll come back Or you
can open your eyes and see all that she's left. Your heart can be empty
because you can't see her Or you can be full of the love you shared.
You can turn your back on tomorrow and live for yesterday Or you can be
happy for tomorrow because of yesterday. You can remember her and only
that she's gone Or you can cherish her memory and let it live on. You
can cry and close your mind, be empty and turn your back Or you can do
what she'd want. Smile, open your eyes, love and go on.
Written by: Charles Henry Brent
Walk Within You
If I be the first of us to die, Let grief not blacken long your sky.
Be bold yet modest in your grieving. There is change but not a leaving.
For just as death is part of life, The dead live on forever in the
living. For all the gathered riches of our journey, The moments
shared, the mysteries explored, The steady layer of intimacy stored,
The things that made us laugh or weep or sing, The joy of sunlit snow or
first unfurling of the spring, The wordless language of look and touch,
The knowing, Each giving and each taking, These are not flowers that
fade, Nor trees that fall or crumble, Nor are they stone For even
stone cannot the wind and rain withstand And mighty mountain peaks in
time reduce to sand. What we were, we are. What we had, we have. A
conjoined past imperishably present. So when you walk the woods where
once we walked together And scan in vain the dappled bank beside you for
my shadow, Or pause where we always did upon the hill to gaze across the
land, And spotting something, reach by habit for my hand, And finding
none, feel sorrow start to steal upon you, Be still. Close your eyes.
Breathe. Listen for my footfall in your heart. I am not gone but
merely walk within you.
A calendar of
'special day todays' gives the year signposts. Incidentally every month has at least one Saint's
day indicating the importance that our ancestors put on the seasons and having
an excuse for a feast day. Knowledge of what's particular about today
date can be a great ice-breaker for meeting both new and old friends.
Will and Guy are also keen to make these festival day as international as
possible, hence we have included Jewish and Muslim holy dates in amongst