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World Poetry Day: An Open Letter to the Guy at Work by Liz Ruddy

If there is one poem I would like to share on World Poetry Day 2017, it’s this one:

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World Poetry Day: The Battle of Hastings by Marriott Edgar

Happy World Poetry Day, one and all! This year I’m posting in memory of my grandfather Harry King, and sharing one of his classic monologues by Marriott Edgar, and certainly a family favourite!

I’ll tell of the Battle of ‘Astings
As happened in days long gone by,
When Duke William became King of England
And Harold got shot in the eye.

‘Twere this way: One day in October
The Duke, who were always a toff,
And having no battles on at the moment
Had given his lads the day off.

They’d all took some boats to go fishin’
When some chap in the Conqueror’s ear,
Said: “Let’s go and put breeze up the Saxons.”
Says Bill: “By ‘eck, that’s an idea!”

Then turning around to his soldiers,
He lifted his great Norman voice
And said: “Hands up who’s coming to England.”
That was swank ‘cos they hadn’t much choice.

So they all set sail about teatime,
And the sea were so calm and so still
And at quarter to ten the next morning
They arrived at a place called Bexhill.

When Harold had seen that they’d landed,
He came up with venom and hate,
Saying :”If tha’s come for the regatta
Tha’s come here a fortnight too late.”

But William arose cool and haughty,
And said: “Give us none of your cheek.
And you’d best have your throne reupholstered,
I’ll be wanting to use it next week.”

When Harold heard this ‘ere defiance
With rage, he turned purple and blue,
And shouted so rude words in Saxon,
To which William answered: “And you!”

It were a beautiful day for a battle.
The Normans set off with a will.
And when they’d all duly assembled,
They tossed for the top of the hill.

King Harold, he won the advantage.
On the hilltop he took up his stand,
With his knaves and his lads all around him
On his horse, with his hawk in his hand.

Now the Normans had nowt in their favour.
Their chance for a victory were small
For the slope of the field were against them
And the wind in their faces, and all.

The kick-off was sharp at 2.30
And as soon as the whistle had went
Both sides started bashing each other
Till the swineherds could hear them in Kent.

The Saxons had best line of forwards,
Well armed with buckler and sword,
But the Normans had best combination
So when halftime came, neither had scored.

Then t’Duke called his cohorts together
And said: “Let’s pretend that we’re beat.
And when we get t’Saxons on level
We can cut off their means of retreat.”

So they ran and the Saxons ran after
Just exactly as William had planned
Leaving Harold alone on the hilltop
One his horse, with his hawk in his hand.

When William saw what had happened
His bow and his arrow he drew
He went straight up to Harold and shot him.
He were offside, but what could they do?

Then t’Normans turned round with a fury
And gave back both parry and thrust,
Till the battle were over, bar shouting
And you couldn’t see Saxons for dust.

And after the battle were over
There, sitting so stately and grand
Was Harold, with an eyeful of arrow
On his horse, with his hawk in his hand.

By George Marriott Edgar (1880 – 1951)

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Blog Closed for NaNoWriMo – see you in December!

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October 29, 2014 · 1:00 pm

Poetry Week – All that is gold does not glitter by J.R.R. Tolkien

Happy World Poetry Day!

It’s difficult to select a “favourite poem of all time”. Not difficult in the same way of chosing a favourite song (which is actually impossible), but difficult in a way that the question demands special attention.

You can usually tell a lot about a person from what their favourite poem is in a way that you can’t from their favourite song(s). My favourite poems are mostly ones I read during my childhood because that was the only time that I really just absorbed poetry as if I needed it to live. You can already make assumptions on my character from that, and you can make even more assumptions based on my actual favourite: All that is gold does not glitter.

Why is it my favourite? Couldn’t really tell you. It’s short, effective, and from Lord of the Rings and that’s magical as fuck so that’s probably all there is to it. Still, it’s the only poem I’ve loved so much that I wrote it out in Circular Gallifreyan to print and hang on my wall.

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Don’t give me shit about mixing the fandoms – it’s awesome and you know it.

It’s a beautiful poem, perfectly fitting to end Poetry Week. And now I invite you to share your favourite poems, and I won’t make any assumptions on your character based on your choice, promise.

All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.
From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king.

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Poetry Week – I have a gentil cock by Anon

World Poetry Day takes place on 21st March. I’m posting five of my favourite poems this week – what are your favourites?

Sometimes the best poems are the naughty ones; case in point: Chaucer.

I don’t know about you but I enjoy a naughty poem a lot more if it’s written in yesteryear – like this one is (early 15th century).

It’s simple, crude, and funny. And it’s a fave.

I have a gentil cock
croweth me day
he doth me risen early
my matins for to stay

I have a gentil cock
comen he is of great
his comb is of red coral
his tail is of jet

I have a gentil cock
comen he is of kind
his comb is of red sorrel
his tail is of inde

his legs be of azure
so gentil and so small
his spurs are of silver white
into the wortewale

his eyes are of crystal
locked all in amber
and every night he pertcheth him
in my lady`s chamber

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