We have finally arrived to the epic (okay maybe not) conclusion of this three part series. You can remind yourselves of what's come beforehand in in Part 1 and Part 2. But for those who have, let's crack on.
Ballad of a Hero – Kate Tempest
I have already given high praise for Tempest in one of my first blogs, but “Ballad of a Hero” is a great one to learn for its emotion and rhythm. It’s one you can feel the hurt and suffering in for all the characters involved: the inconsolable father, the distraught mother and the innocent child. Tempest performs it superbly – dig around for it on YouTube and you’ll find yourself a poetic treat.
A Subaltern’s Love Song – John Betjeman
This is a poem about hot days in the South London sun and a flustering middle class romance – and in my mind – one of the best poems of the 20th century. It tells the tale of a man besotted by a tennis player. Sure I’ve seen this tale before in a rather average rom-com....
The Charge of the Light Brigade – Alfred Lord Tennyson
This is another one that stuck with me from when I did LAMDA classes at school. The theme that hung onto me when I learnt this was blind optimism, 600 soldiers trying to cheat death in the field of battle. It’s basically 300, but a bit less heroic.
Prayer – Carol Ann Duffy
I’ve never been an avid reader of Duffy’s work but I do enjoy this sonnet (yes it is an English sonnet – look closely children) for its smart rhyme and rhythm. It’s a poem to hold dear and remind you that we have a lot to be thankful for. Like a fresh wedge of cake on Sunday afternoons....mmm cake.
Nightsong – Adrian Henri
Inspired by Lord Byron’s “We'll go no more a-roving”, this is just a nice poem to read out loud, despite it being about reminiscing the good times with an ex. Okay if you are going through a break-up, don’t learn this one by heart. Seriously. I don’t want to be blamed for rekindling thoughts of your failed relationship!
Coffee in Heaven – John Agard
A short and sweet poem to finish this list. I’ve added it not just because Agard recites it as a sweet little song, but also because its about coffee. I like coffee. Especially when I am writing. And now I’m craving coffee at 9pm....and cake dammit!
And there’s my list of 20. What did you make of it? Have a missed out anything so glaringly obvious that it makes you want to slap me in my sleep? Then drop a comment and let me know what you think.
So you're here
Great stuff. Feel free to have a gander at my poetry and blog entries to the left. If you want to know why on God's green earth this page is here, click on the 'About' tab up top.