My 13 year old grandson's school class was called upon recently to write a poem. Knowing him all these years and his current dedication to playing his drum-set, so wasn't expecting Matty to do very well. I was very wrong and pleasantly surprised at his effort! It was the subject matter that surprised me the most.
His mother then told me that his poem had been judged and accepted and will be published in a book to be called “Express yourself – Southern Poets” – which is due to be released on 31st Aug 2012. She enclosed a copy of his poem which I post here for your perusal and opinion. I have Matty's permission to do this, by the way! :) TC.
World War One
1913, it is lovely and sunny here
Sipping on my cold beer
Walking through the lush green park
Listening to the neighbour’s dog bark.
Suddenly! Sirens go
For what reason I do not know
“We’re going to war,” the man says
Every single one stays.
1914, the start of war
All of us sent by law
For what I’m going to see, I do not know
None of us want to go!
“Over the wall,” the sergeant says
All of us load our guns just in case
This is my first day in battle
Having to hide behind dead cattle
It is now the end of the day
Friends talk but I have nothing to say
Friends in bags
Their clothes just muddy rags
1919, the war is long over
But do you think I’m happy?
For what I have seen there is no reason to be happy!
Battlefields like the Devil’s playground
Men mindless and in shock
Do I feel happy?
The answer is no
I will never be the same
For all war is a foolish game.
Thank you,lotvic, for the kind words. I'm sure he will appreciate them when I tell him.
Yes, the subject matter in the poem took us all by surprise. On reflection though, he is a deep thinking lad who is well liked by his school and all his friends. His good manners too are above reproach. I have been having some intelligent conversations with him recently, mainly about what he is aiming for in life, regarding a profession. He is unsure at the moment which at his age is naturally understandable.
Being an ex-serviceman myself, I did seek any interest in the forces, but his poem tells me that war and its horrible consequences would never inspire him to join the ranks. We will see what develops in the future and his parents and I will give him guidance as best we can on his eventual career decision. TC.
Hi TopCat®. He obviously has come from good stock. His good manners and keen brain are a credit to yours and his parents guidance. A young man who you'll be proud of and will continue to be so in his future.
Thank God there are still some families that know how to talk and involve their children, and not just stick them in front of the TV.
Speaking for myself, Breitling, such guidance as I gave my grandson stems from my own parents love and affection in bringing all six siblings up the right way. None of us ever let them down.
I'm a firm believer that most of a child's character is formed within its first five years of life. Sensible and responsible parenting and good guidance from the start will set the children on the right course in life.
You need to check out Linton Kwesi Johnson. I bought many JCC recording 20-30 years ago and LKJ was the other poet of the day. A very down to earth Reggae/dub style. As a good introduction to his work try youtube for Inglan is a bitch.