School pupils to chronicle lockdown life through poetry



Young people are being urged to come up with lockdown poetry for a new anthology.

The project is aimed at getting 11 to 18-year-olds to explore their thoughts and feelings about the pandemic through creativity.

Staffordshire University has teamed up with Staffordshire’s poet laureate Mel Wardle Woodend to launch the challenge.

It is open to any secondary age pupils across Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire. They are being asked to create a poem based on one of three themes: lockdown, relationships or charity.

All the entries will be included in an electronic anthology, which will be sent to the young poets and their schools by the end of term. Each student will also receive a digital certificate of participation.

Rebecca Sherratt, PGCE English course leader at the university, is coordinating the project.

She said: “The intention is for young people to be creative in their approach and free from restrictions, which means there are no rules on length or whether or not it rhymes.

“We just ask that it comes from the heart. That way, the finished anthology will act as a legacy of how it really feels to be a young person living through a pandemic.”

While the entries will not be marked, staff and trainee teachers at the university will pick out their favourites, which will have star positioning at the beginning of each section.

Stafford-based poet laureate Mel said: “This is a fab project and I’m very pleased to be involved.”

Young people have already begun sending in their entries.

Poems are invited from Year 7 to Year 13 students. They should be emailed to poetry@staffs.ac.uk by Friday, June 12, including the name, school, age and chosen theme.

For more information, visit Staffordshire University’s PGCE Facebook page.

Show me the waves colliding

on a hot summer’s day.

Crash! Splash!

The feeling of water

spraying lightly on my face.

Show me a sea of faces

at a lively concert.

A song of laughter

playing in my ear.

Show me a packed mall,

hearing the

“I want this”

and

“I want that”

of passing shoppers.

Show me a ray of sunlight,

beaming down

onto a raindrop

as it falls

from the peak

of a leaf.

Show me the look

on my nana’s face

as I visit her

on another cloudy day.

Show me my friends beside me,

as we roll

down a hill,

the grass tickling our faces

as we breathe in the fresh air.

An explosion of laughter

shortly following our stop.

Show me a school,

a party,

a prom,

a wedding.

Even just a family dinner or BBQ.

Show me a cinema,

the scent of popcorn

lingering in the air.

Show me the stars

in the night sky,

twinkling

brightly above me.

Show me things

I have never seen.

Show me things

I have seen before.

Show me the world in a different light.

Show me true love,

whatever it may be.

Show me all of this

and much, much more,

for I fear that I may never see such things.

Show me everything

before I can no longer see,

how beautiful

this world can be.





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