Poetry for the jaded
There's a new blog in town, packed with resources for teaching and engaging through poetry. Our Education blog, Making Makars, is off to a strong start in 2014 with some free teaching resources to download.
But teaching resources are inspiration not only for the teachers. This week, teacher Jane Bonnyman offers 'poetry for the jaded' which explores the work of Louis MacNeice and Bob Dylan and is aimed at those, particularly boys, who are reluctant to engage with poetry. Download the plan from our teachers' resources section.
If your own reading palate, or that of your reading group, is feeling a little jaded and in need of a fresh start, bookmark the Making Makars blog and raid it for inspiration.
Poetry of War
But there is also a good choice of contemporary war poetry.
For display, look out titles such as the new anthology 1914: Poetry Remembers edited by Carol Ann Duffy (Faber, 2013), or her illustrated poem The Christmas Truce (Picador, 2012) by which narrates the Christmas ceasefire between British and German troops in World War One. Popular poet and broadcaster Ian MacMillan has a new book out, The Tale of Walter the Pencil Man (Smokestack Books, Oct 2013).
Mick Imlah’s ‘London Scottish’ and Carol Ann Duffy's ‘War Photographer’ are attractive individual poems for discussion, as is The Not Dead (Pomona Books) by Simon Armitage: watch him discussing his war poetry here. Our Reel Iraq podcast gives an interesting cultural perspective on the experiences of poets living in a conflict zone.
For a pre-World War I perspective, try Kipling's 'Tommy', which still has resonance for many readers today, or explore poems in our World War I selection online which include evocative pieces by writers such as John Buchan and 'Para Handy' author Neil Munro.
T S Eliot Prize reading group resources
The T S Eliot Prize shortlist - winners announced on 13 January - is now out.
Each year, the Poetry Book Society (who run the T S Eliot Prize) provide these excellent reading group resources - a free download on each of the shortlisted poets' books, with three sample poems and a biography and photo of the poet.
National Poetry Day 2013
Thank you to all the librarians and teachers who have sent in photos and news of National Poetry Day celebrations which we're putting up here.
If you've got more news or photos to share, or you'd like to send us comments about NPD resources, please email us.
And thank you to everybody who helped with feedback on this year's NPD plans. The £50 Amazon voucher went to Neil Paterson, Network Librarian at Mearns Academy, whose email was drawn from the hat.