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Regular news and insight from our many poets, writers, educators and facilitators

23 November 2021

Posted by Tabby Hayward


This week we were looking at the About Us poetry and coding competition - from a poetry angle, of course!

The theme is 'connectivity and the universe' and they have lots of free useful resources on the different approaches you might want to take - looking up to the stars or into the blood and cells of the body, or around us at the natural world!

We started this week by looking to the stars and writing about our star signs - some knew a lot about this already, while others weren't at all interested! We thought about the strange symbolism - what does it mean to be a bull if you're Taurus, or a water carrier if you're Aquarius - or to be an air sign, or an earth sign? 

Leo took the approach of writing a poem about how much he hates star signs - which is nonetheless rather beautiful and haunting!

Down down down
down to dusty death,
to mines of gold and further down
down down down
down to the dark abyss,
to the edge of life and further down
down down down
down to unlit candles,
to the deepest depth yet further still,
down down down
down to rotten souls
beyond the depths of hell and deeper
deeper deeper deeper
to the part of my mind where
  star signs reside.

Next, we looked at the About Us resources about writing about stars and space and how we might be connected - starting with the poem 'Roll Up! Roll Up!' by Cheryl Moscovitz.

We looked at this as inspiration to create our own conversation poems (using quotes from astronauts, scientists, priests and poets about the stars and space as a starting point!) or portrait poems (taking something from space and personifying it/describing it to paint a picture!)

Aurora wrote this striking poem, connecting the speaker of the poem with a particular star:

That star is me, not the brightest,
nor gaudiest or bawdiest or all-so-lordiest,
but a little pinprick of electric light
in the dark and lonely night.
It hides its face behind a veil of pollution,
I hide from problems with no solution:
we both like to stay out of sight
in the dark and lonely night.
We have these ambitions, hopes but few,
yet still we wish to keep them true.
Unlucky are we, in our plight,
in the dark and lonely night.
Our lives we squander, so depend
on nought but that would seal our end,
and so do I begin my fight,
deny the dark and lonely night!
So call those far and in between!
We’re shining now to bring our dream!
For together, wrought with might,
there is no more a lonely night.

We'll look more at different approaches to this competition next week!


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