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Poems about school and teachers

Discussion in 'English' started by equivicator, Sep 20, 2008.

  1. I am desperately trying to remember details about a poem I read a long time ago. In the poem the narrator was reflecting upon a teacher and the impact their negative marking had upon them as a pupil. It was something of a revenge poem if I remember correctly. If anyone can enlighten me about the poem and the poet I would be extremely grateful. I have done some searching but am obviously not putting appropriate search terms in.

    Also if you can recommend any other poems on the theme of schools/teachers etc suitable for the 14-18 age range I would (once again!) be extremely grateful.



    Thanks!
     
  2. I am desperately trying to remember details about a poem I read a long time ago. In the poem the narrator was reflecting upon a teacher and the impact their negative marking had upon them as a pupil. It was something of a revenge poem if I remember correctly. If anyone can enlighten me about the poem and the poet I would be extremely grateful. I have done some searching but am obviously not putting appropriate search terms in.

    Also if you can recommend any other poems on the theme of schools/teachers etc suitable for the 14-18 age range I would (once again!) be extremely grateful.



    Thanks!
     
  3. I don't know the poem you are looking for but another on the same theme is The Schoolboy by William Blake, from Songs of Innocence:
    I love to rise in a summer morn
    When the birds sing on every tree;
    The distant huntsman winds his horn,
    And the skylark sings with me.
    Oh, what sweet company!

    But to go to school in a summer morn,
    Oh! it drives all joy away;
    Under a cruel eye outworn
    The little ones spend the day
    In sighing and dismay.

    Ah! then at times I drooping sit,
    And spend many an anxious hour;
    Nor in my book can I take delight,
    Nor sit in learning's bower,
    Worn through with the dreary shower.

    How can the bird that is born for joy
    Sit in a cage and sing?
    How can a child, when fears annoy,
    But droop his tender wing,
    And forget his youthful spring?

    O, father and mother, if buds are nipped
    And blossoms blown away,
    And if the tender plants are stripped
    Of their joy in the springing day,
    By sorrow and care's dismay,

    How shall the summer arise in joy,
    Or the summer fruits appear?
    Or how shall we gather what griefs destroy,
    Or bless the mellowing year,
    When the blasts of winter appear?

     
  4. Liz Lochhead looks at much wider issues surrounding school which are perfect for a very sophisticated study of the theme. I like "The Choosing", about the difference between the expectations of school and the realities of growing up, and the "In the Dreamschool" triptych, with the fabulous lines



    "Red ticks like flyaway

    flocks of birds sprigged the best exercise books."



    or



    The Teachers



    "They taught you

    that what you wrote in ink

    carried more weight than what you wrote in pencil..."



    There's another brilliant one about having the language of your home life ridiculed by Standard English speaking teachers, but can't track down the title just now.



    If you want a much more contemporary look at poetry about school, check her out.
     
  5. Thank you Antigone9 & Raymagnol, much appreciated!

    Thinking about that first poem is driving me nuts though, but I cannot even remember specific lines, it's just vague images that have stayed with me. There was reference to the teacher's handwriting, red ink and a date. Oh well. Once again, thanks for your help!
     

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