We cover poetry in A215 and although that’s not until the New Year, The Ode Less Travelled by Stephen Fry has been recommended by various people on the OU A215 forum.
While I was in Cornwall last weekend visiting Emily and Michael, I spied a copy of The Ode Less Travelled on their bookshelves. “Ooh, I said, do you write poetry?” I asked Emily. “No, Michael’s sister gave it to me for Christmas,” she replied. I said I’d been recommended it and promptly took it off the shelf and gave it a quick flick through.
I didn’t understand a word of it. Ok, maybe the odd word like “a” and “and” but apart from that, complete gobbledegook. I very ladylikely said “Bollocks to that then” and put it back on the shelf as promptly as I’d taken it off.
After returning to Kent, I went on the forum and said I’d had a quick flick through it but didn’t understand a word of it. Someone sensibly pointed out that if I read it from the beginning it would make more sense. Wise words, I thought, but didn’t want to splash out on it via amazon so logged on to my good old fashioned bricks, mortar and dust library’s website and reserved a copy, which I picked up yesterday.
This time, I started reading it from the beginning. I hadn’t got very far (in fact only the third page in the Foreword) when Mr Fry says “While it is perfectly possible that you did not learn music at school, or drawing and painting, it is almost certain that you did learn poetry.“
Now, while I don’t consider myself an inverted snob or suffer from any class insecurities, I would like to point out that in my school we most certainly did learn music, and drawing and painting but most certainly did not learn poetry. At least, from what I can remember. What school did he go to where he didn’t learn music, and drawing and painting? Certainly wasn’t an East London comprehensive, anyway.
What, you don’t think he went to an East London comprehensive? Blimey.