National Poetry Day 2022

6 October 2022

Today is National Poetry Day and girls may find their teachers reading a poem during class that has particular significance to them. Some may pick the theme which, this year is “The Environment” or it might just be a poem they really like. I’d like to share one that I find significant to me (as I live close to the river Stour) that I found on the National Poetry Day website

To the River Stour by Caleb Parkin

some call you S’toor, like poor
and I thought this your proper
posher name because mum
pronounced you that way

others called you St-our, like our
and maybe that’s your name
too as you wiggle like an idyll
on a National Trust postcard

through Essex-Suffolk floodplain
horizon    pinned on with spires
punctured by telephone masts
ears trained on each glottal stop

coppiced willows flank your banks
boaters meander as they squint
to find tributaries into Constable
gorgeous and serene so flat and yet

I longed for the wide mouth
of estuaries   the way they aren’t
one thing or another   their brackish
manner   part-play   part-threat

Stour, St-oor, St-hour, you’re a Site
of Special Scientific Pinterest
a keepnet for Nordic walkers
a cowpat for bluebottle tourists

and streams of gleaming Land
Rovers yearning for a blemish
a picture-perfect cream tea
on an English patina, cracking

 © Caleb Parkin

With kind permission from the author and Broken Sleep Books

There are many other poems to explore on that website. Relax, unwind and enjoy!

Mrs Cassell, Librarian




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