Tag Archives: manchester

Ophelia 

Ophelia We wake to find her Fingerprints, Saharan dust On window sills, on Rooftops, Schoolyards, Graves, On driveways and motorways, On pylons and leaves, On our fingertips, Faint as ash. As if to say: See, there is a land Out … Continue reading

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There is a light. How poetry is helping us find hope this week in Manchester

I teach English in an inner-city Manchester school. It’s been a tough week. Monday night’s terrorist attack created a backdrop of sirens, questions and uncertainty. Our school is as diverse as the wider city, we have a palette of pupils from … Continue reading

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For the love of Love On The Dole: A love-letter to Walter Greenwood, via my granddad. And Morrissey

I’m a firm believer that books wait for you. Like fishing in reverse, they let you pick them, pull them down from the shelf, let you start them, let you in, sometimes let you devour them in a single sitting; … Continue reading

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Fantastico: In Praise of Longfella and Project-Based Learning

Poetry, as I explained to the class, was never a real thing for me, as a schoolkid. For us, poets didn’t exist. They lived only in dusty books on that shelf of the library that nobody could reach. So, to … Continue reading

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Calcium 

Today is Manchester Day. This is a poem I wrote about the way the city stays with you, even (as in this case) as you leave it, it will draw you back.    

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There Is A Light

Just listened to Mike Garry talking about the Smiths on Radio 4 (check out his blog godisamanc.wordpress.com.) Got me thinking about the first time I heard the Smiths. Just left this response on Mike’s page: I don’t know what I’m … Continue reading

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Where You Are (In Memoriam: Robert Stuart 1924-2012)

  When my granddad died, I wanted to write something for him, but couldn’t. The words wouldn’t come. When we took the train to Newcastle to scatter his ashes in the Tyne, I wanted to say something, but couldn’t. This … Continue reading

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Sunlight (Eston Street): A poem for Keith Bennett

For the post-war, post-1960s, post-modern, post-Tony Wilson, post-Smiths, post-everything generation, Manchester’s past is a projection, a kind of grim nostalgia, stitched together in song lyrics and cult films, stills of Coronation Street and Rita Tushingham. The early 1960s is black … Continue reading

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“Powerpoints for the People!” Quiet Loner and Tony Walsh at the People’s History Museum, Manchester, 18/05/2013

What passed in the few hours on Saturday afternoon may have been the politest revolution in musical history. Matt Hill (Quiet Loner) launches his album ‘Greedy Musicians’, a biting political assault on the coalition government not with a rally or … Continue reading

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When Thatcher Died

Growing up in the 1980s, it was difficult not to be affected by Thatcher’s destructive policies, especially in the North. ‘Thatcher, Milk Snatcher’ was a rhyme we seemed to know before we could speak. Not that we were indoctrinated, we … Continue reading

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