Wednesday, October 28, 2020

School

What I hoped to capture in yesterday's poem Jailbreak was that tremendous ability we once had as young children to live so in the moment that we forget the entire world around us. The game in the playground, for that present time, is everything to us and our concentration upon it quite wholesome and fulfilling. I don't think we ever have quite the same experience or ability even a stage further into early teenage years or as young adults to be able to simply focus and concentrate on the immediate - do you agree with me (I hope so!)?

I wrote this next poem, School, some years after I left secondary education. I'd enjoyed much of my university life but had also grown torridly unwell and this piece is part of my reflection on how in such short time I had completely forgotten the sureness and stability of my schooldays. One morning, I took a walk from present accommodation, sat on a bench looking over my old school's playing fields, listened to the soft breeze dancing through the leaves on the trees and suddenly felt myself quite dislocated, disembodied, separate from myself... 

If a different world it seem,

Then maybe it be so,
Maybe the self regenerates,
Maybe we'll never know.

Maybe that watching cricket
In the lazy summer sun,
Is like to fast remind us
Of those halcyon days of fun.

The sports hall and the fives courts,
And the tennis courts as well,
Remind us of ten years ago
When time was just a bell.

Bell to move us daily from each class and to the next,
Bell to time us hourly as we studied hard set text,
Bell to bring us into school and then to send us home,
Bell to mark our onward course as we left here to roam.

To roam beyond the playing fields,
To roam the outside wold,
How comforting return from there
Into this welcome fold.

Once more, the sights, the sounds, the smells,
Assail our sense high,
'Tis pity we must soon begone,
Return with drawn out sigh.

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