Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Poem of the Week : 'The Catch'

Today in Chapel we launched our new 'Poem of the Week' scheme with some readings by prefects. Every Wednesday the chosen Poem of the Week will be posted on noticeboards around the school, and read to English classes by teachers. The scheme is partly prompted by the 21 year-old Poems on the Underground project in London - the idea that a poem can grab a moment from a passer-by, and amuse / interest / excite us. We hope that before long we will also post poems by pupils. Each Wednesday details about the poems and poets will be gathered here.

The first choice is appropriate for the time of year - Simon Armitage's 'The Catch', about cricket. More can be seen on the poet at his website here. There's also an interesting article on the poem (with the full text) in the Psychiatric Bulletin here, with Jeremy Holmes writing :-

"It is hard to describe why I find this seemingly simple poem so moving. It is essentially an action replay of a tiny yet significant moment in a cricket match. Like an action replay it plays with time, slowing it down to a freeze-frame where the powerful feelings aroused by a batsman's dismissal can be examined and absorbed. The event described takes place in a fraction of a second, yet the tone of the poem is languorous and sleepy — a typical afternoon in early summer, evoking nostalgic memories of childhood, boring or forgettable perhaps, but punctuated by a single moment of beauty and brilliance where ball meets hand."

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