Isles of Wonder

A poem inspired by Danny Boyle’s Olympic Opening Ceremony

Isles of Wonder

These Isles of Wonder,
these precious stones set in a silver sea,
We looked into our story,
Through the mists of time, our history,
From bucolic idyll, to pandemonium,
Satanic Mills thrusting high,
Smoke billowing into the sky,
To those who marched for a better life,
The ghosts of the Pankhursts, Jarrow came alive.
We looked inside ourselves,
Our eccentricities, our humour,
Our diversity,
Mary Poppins, Voldemort from our stories,
Yet a dream snaked through like the veins in our hand,
A dream of a new Jerusalem through effort, endeavour, through sport,
A dream of a new Jerusalem for all, in our pleasant land.

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On the sixth day….. (Manchester)

On the sixth day,
God created Manchester they say.
Always knew we were blessed,
Always knew we were heaven sent,
Sending us musical prophets,
Oasis, Happy Mondays, Stone Roses,
Morrissey’s dulcet tones,
sending us leaden skies and rain,
That soaks us to the bone.
A city one of a kind, a city divine,
A worker bee, a beating heart never ceasing to pound,
Pankhurst and Engels dwelled among this revolutionary crowd.
Yet if he created the city,
The rain soaking to the bone,
Did he create our spirit,
independent, proud, a spirit all our own?
No, we did it when he rested,
We did it ouselves,
On the seventh day!

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