Wednesday, 12 September 2012

First Story Workshop with Caroline Bird

Caroline Bird: Excellent
This year I will be writer in residence at St Augustine's school for First Story, the excellent charity set up by Will Fiennes and Katie Waldegrave. We did some workshops in preparation yesterday with the poet Caroline Bird, in which we wrote poems about abstract nouns.  I don’t write poetry (well, not since I was a teenager and thought poetry meant writing down versions of Nirvana lyrics about blood and hate and so on.) I got "Irritation," and this is what happened.


He’s so small he fits into the
Prickle of your eyelids when
You blink. I see him refracted
When I wake. He sits there,
Pleased with himself,
Holding that damned watch
He’s always winding.
Close your eyes, you say.
No good. That gives him
Full permission. Sometimes he does a
Dance, wheeling, prancing piratically.
Sometimes he pulls his baggage along
Rushing for a train he’ll never catch.
You can’t squash him - I tried once,
With a fly-swatter shaped like a
Tennis racquet. He split, calmly, into
Two - then three - pirouetted - and
They built themselves bungalows
In my ear lobes.

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