Kicking off dramatically was Michael Kemp, with 'I Am', which was recently Highly Commended in the Teaching English magazine national poetry competition. He was followed by a poem from Sappho read by our only current pupil of Ancient Greek, Ludo Stewart, 'The Crush' (followed by a translation read by Sarah Whelan). Arthur Moffitt then gave a compelling reading of Gary Soto's beautiful 'Oranges'. Spanish (Imogen Wardell), French (Victor Wachs), Dutch (Eireann Tinkhof) and Ibo (Ike Onwurah) were next up.
The next section featured poems written under the theme 'Creatures' for the recent Junior Poetry Prize, all of which have been posted here: 'Teenagers' by Philippa Carroll, 'The Spider' by Alexandra Boyd Crotty, 'We are They' by Duncan Mathews, and two poems by the winner of the Prize, Mark Russell, 'Piglets' and 'In our Attic'. These were followed by poems in Portguese (Eugenia Perez), German (Chris Faerber), Chinese (Lingfan Gao) and Russian (Igor Verkhovskiy).
Mr Girdham then talked about our new book, Outside the Frame (several poems read out are in it), and read his own poem 'Here and There' composed as a response to Patrick Faulkner's front cover photograph. This photograph, along with images from the next few poems, was projected on a screen. Four poems from the TY Images in Poetry followed: Ms Smith reading Kate Boyd Crotty's 'Ophelia and the Guard', Kate herself reading Sophie Millar's 'Lake Thun', Olivia Plunket reading 'Judith and Holofernes' (recently award 3= prize in the Teaching English poetry competition), and Patrick Tice 'Under Umbrellas'.
The final part of the evening started with Siobhan Brady's reading of 'Donal Og', followed by Molly Dunne's translation, and then pupils who are or once were in Primary: Archie Brooke (Latin, from Ovid's Metamorphoses, Marta Carlotti (Italian), Kaila Korschen (Swahili) and Senior Prefect Alec Cherry (Christina Rossetti's 'O Sailor Come Ashore').
Finally, Olivia Plunket, winner of the Peter Dix Memorial Prize for Poetry this year (pictured) read her poem 'Drops', Mr Canning read former colleague Morgan Dockrell's poem based on the names of cricketers in the pavilion who also died in the World Wars, and John Clarke from I form ended the evening powerfully with his perfectly-learnt rendition of 'Weathers' by Thomas Hardy. John was earlier this year a semi-finalist in the Poetry Aloud competition.
Another lovely evening, and sincere thanks to Mr Swift for putting it all together.