Celebrating National Poetry Day

“Poetry makes life what light and music do the stage.”

Well said, Charles Dickens! This week, we’re celebrating National Poetry Day, on Thursday, October 4.  Founded in 1994 by the Forward Arts Foundation, National Poetry Day aims to promote the enjoyment, discovery and sharing of poetry, and increase its audience.

There’s lots planned to help celebrate – just visit www.nationalpoetryday.co.uk and click on Events Near You to find out what’s on in your area. Here in Dundee we have a poetry walking tour, entitled The Changing City, discovering how the people of Dundee past and present have found inspiration in Dundee’s changing landscape: embracing, resisting and remembering change through poetry and song.

Some members of the Friend Team share their favourite poems…

“I have too many to mention, but my absolute favourite poet is Violet Jacob, whose work gives me goose bumps whenever I read it. I love to recite them, too. Three of my favourites of hers are “The Warld”, “The Rowan” and “Maggie”. She would be my first guest at a fantasy dinner table.

“Another random one I love to say is “The Cat and the Moon” by WB Yeats.”



“I’m going to go for “Man Was Made To Mourn” by Robert Burns.”



“It might be colonial, but Rudyard Kipling’s “If” has always been a favourite. It still stands as a blueprint for honour and determination.

“I also love Wilfred Owen’s “Dulce Et Decorum Est”, but it’s so sad.”



“I’d go with “Requiem” by Robert Louis Stevenson (the last few lines of which are actually on his gravestone in Samoa):

“Here he lies where he longed to be,
Home is the sailor, home from sea,
And the hunter home from the hill.””



I love “The Cloths of Heaven” by W B Yeats.

“We studied W B Yeats for A Level and I have to say I found some of it difficult but I always loved this one, it has stayed with me over the years.

“I love the use of language, the musicality and rhythm, and the internal rhyme.

“As a teenager, I thought it was very romantic, the words of an impoverished, love-lorn youth to his beloved!”





If you love poetry, our Fireside Book 2019 has 60 seasonal verses to bring you cheer throughout the year. And our Friendship Book 2019 has messages of faith and hope in the form of poems and reflections.


Lucy Crichton

Fiction Editor Lucy is always on the look-out for the very best short stories, poems and pocket novels. As well as sourcing enjoyable content, she enjoys working with our established contributors, encouraging new talent, and celebrating 155 years of 'Friend' fiction!