To coincide with the 2013 Rugby League World Cup matches hosted in Hull in October and November,
Hull Central Library and Write to Speak recently ran a series of free workshops under the banner of
Try Reading Poetry, culminating in a special performance at the launch of the Humber Mouth literature festival 2103.
Presented by performance poets Joe Hakim and Mike Watts, these workshops served as an introduction to spoken word,
giving participants the basic tools to take their material from the page to the stage.
Focusing on Hull's rich rugby heritage, the workshop poets produced work inspired by themes such as hard work, resilience and community.
ThisisUll.com is pleased to publish the results...
In association with Hull Libraries, Hull City Council, Arts Council England and the James Reckitt Library Trust
Try Reading Poetry in Hull 2013 Video
Alan Padwick - Rugby Kids
Poetry - Rugby Kids By Alan Padwick
When we were kids we played rugby in the street
no posts, no grass and only sandshoed feet.
Sometimes we had an egg shaped ball,
at other times a sphere.
But we were tough and we played rough,
and most of all we had no fear. Read more...
Catherine Scott - Respect
Poetry Respect By Catherine Scott
The atmosphere is buzzing at the KC ground
There is an absolutely terrifying cacophony of sound
The crowd want to see a hard fought match
On their very own turf, their very own patch
The teams run on and they all shake hands
Sing National Anthems as tradition demands
They fall out of line and take up position Read more...
David Thompson - East and West
Poetry East and West By David Thompson
I came to cross the great divide,
That stops the traffic at high tide,
With border guard who glowered down,
At anyone from east of town,
'Across this bridge you shall not pass,
You come from Rovers land alas', Read more...
Ernest Jackson - Stroke City
Poetry Stroke City By Ernest Jackson
Culture in Derry stroke Londonderry
Defeated ancient divisions stroke splits:
RC stroke CE and Irish stroke Brits.
Quarrels too old to forget stroke bury.
Culture in Hull stroke Kingston upon Hull
Developed through few stroke many a year
Uniting the Roundhead stroke Cavalier:
People whose bird is the pigeon stroke gull. Read more...
Jessica Leathley - In the Car, Thinking Rugby OR In the Shower, Panicking
Poetry In the Car, Thinking Rugby OR In the Shower, Panicking By Jessica Leathley
What’s it about, this rugby? What does it mean to me?
I don’t understand it, I don’t know the rules
I don’t know the names or the words or the teams.
Is it Union or League I ask and I ask.
League Jess League! The exasperation shows.
Airlie Birds, Robins, Warriors, Bulls
What do they mean? What are those? Read more...
Michael Wood - Up North its Grin
Poetry Up North It's Grin By Michael Wood
In six days the world was created,
On the seventh came demarcation lines,
One of these is a stretch of hills,
Famously known as the Pennines,
They separate men from madmen,
They divide the east from west,
The White Rose from the Red Rose, Read more...
Patricia Gray - Salute from a Fan
Poetry - Salute From A Fan By Patricia Gray
I've always loved the rugby games
I know all of the positions and some of their names
I like the team spirit, the speed gets my attention
It's a simple game with no pretention.
I admire the players - one stated aim;
To score the points and win the game
With strength and agility they run the field
With team ship and ability they'll never yield Read more...
Rob Eunson - England
Poetry - England ...This is your time ... By Robert Eunson
The two front rows are like buffalos
The hooker's like a bloodhound on heat
The centre half's built like a horse and cart
And the full back... he's called Pete
The rest of the pack they stand...unfazed
like rhino's waiting for the rampage...
There's tension and nerves before the game begins but
when they put on the shirt they won't care if it hurts Read more...
Julie Corbett - Watching Rugby in East Park
Poetry - Watching Rugby in East Park By Julie Corbett
I stand with the home supporters
St. John’s Ambulance, those injured and the passionate unselected.
They keep up a commentary
Weaving plays with banter – wide –
use your flanks, butter fingers, up
and under, ref? is 'is 'ead still on ref?
Now, when the worst clashes and scores looked settled.
The Agreement signed. Another loaded term.
As all troubles hinged on ways how letters sounded.
The old tongue once banned. Hidden orders, passed in that tone.
While loud verbals of ruling powers held the streets;
And seethed hateful, in those kept low, out to bog land parts; Read more...
Poetry - The Curse of Shyness By Dayne Coyne
You never seem to notice
No matter what I try to do
You never seem to notice
The way that I’m burning inside for you
Well, though I’ve tried a-dreaming
And I’ve tried a-scheming
Poetry - Welcome To Hull By Robert Eunson
Hull ...Where you can go bird watching down Preston Road ... and you're absolutely certain to see The Greater Spotted Chav ... in abundance.
Hull ... Where you can still go down Walton Street market and buy your granny a secondhand set of false teeth ... for less than a fiver.
Poetry - Strong For Too Long By Phil Lamb
From the comfort of my crumpled, quilt womb
The sentry tower clock rings out round the room
Awakened from the world where I wish to stay
A world I struggle to get to at the end of the day
I yearn for the world of colour that is so far away
Instead of this world with its blackness and grey Read more...
Poetry - Paltry Poultry Poetry By Martin S Hines
I saw a bird
The bird it looked back
The bird was a duck
Quite quiet its quack
A limp in its leg
And a crick in its back
Broken, one wing Read more...
Poetry - Sundays By Michelle Dee
They tell me there is a deer, roaming free
in the graveyard - I've never seen it.
I've seen a muddy dog haring, all paws and playfulness,
the dry husk of a fallen seed, now skeletal and fruitless.
A forgotten garden-seat swinging, couple-less in the breeze.
The aching of a stout ship, full sail behind a dusty pane. Read more...
Poetry - Fairytale Love By Katelyn Langston
I drown it out with happiness
I drown it out with tears
Pushed back into my memory
You find my biggest fears
Some could be considered normal
Some could be considered fake Read more...
Poetry Funny The Things That Happen By Pamela Scobie Photograph by Tim Green
I met an angel the other day.
He was sitting on the steps outside Wrangthorne Church
in his shirt sleeves
in the sunshine.
And d'you know what my instinctive, uncharitable thought was? How dare you?
Poetry - Poppy Power By Ted Harben
Do you ever sense the visions
in the poppy that you buy,
the countless squads of soldiers
ever cheerful, marching by?
See the bloody scenes of battle,
the carnage of the guns;
or watch the ghosts returning,
Poetry - Ode to a Tea Bag By Ruth Dixon
Tea, I love thee
You're yang to my yee
But when you're mint
You're not everything
You're cracked up to be
Tea, you and me
When I find myself in times of trouble PG Read more...
Poetry Casa Nostra By Pamela Scobie
He took her away from a house that had loved her
And told her to find another
So they could be together.
'You'll do it, kid,' he said.
So she did.
It was in need of affection and care
And he wasn't there. Read more...
Poetry - A Study of Mischief By Bronwyn Ellis
When sticking my nose into trouble,
Cured the bullies' thirst at school,
It was worth those shitty grades,
To know that I could still keep cool,
And deal out rebel stories,
To naughty pups half my size. Read more...
Poetry - Bonfire Night Memories By Simon Icke
It's bonfire night and the sky
is full of crackles and bangs,
brightly coloured lights.
The damp November air;
full of gunpowder and
the smell of fires
Poetry HU7 Part One By Kerry-Joe Pulford
Almost de-railed, too thin, too pale, looks quite scary for her age,
Hides behind the home page.
Best diet ever tasted,
Direct from How to Look Good Wasted.
Poetry - Cut Out These Cut Outs By Jan McGeachie
How effective will placing
Of serving police officers
Be, inside stores?
Will they deter
Those intent on shoplifting Read more...
Poetry - Pipe Dreams By Terry Ireland Photograph by Roland Standaert
Yet another empty shop;
another set of dashed hopes?
Maybe a young couple who
just didn't know the ropes.
I wonder how they felt,
what plans they had made
and how long it took
for all their hopes to fade.
Poetry - Budget Day 2012 By Terry Ireland
I suppose I'm biased
Being of pension age
Though I must admit
Not really feeling any rage.
For I see no real sense
In having a good bitch
For historically the poor are
Ever exploited by the rich. Read more...
Poetry - Pigeon Toed No More By Michelle Dee
The shell rifling through the feathers
buried in its back, the shock, the stunned shock,
the paralysis, the total loss of familiar flight response.
The avian behaviour, proof only
of existence, not of life.
Further penetrating shots.
Poetry - Six to Pay High Price By Patrick Henry
Six mainly Yorkshire soldiers who died,
Blown up in Helmand, and on the world press front page:
Heroes gone, to feed endless need for power and pride:
Senseless fighting for a poor, poppy-sown lost frontier land.
Might of Alexander, Genghis Khan, the British Raj, the Soviets:
Failed to figure how those ragged tribes had not kowtowed.
Poetry - It's OK By Jenny Halliday
I push the button, scroll, enter and wait.
Hoping, holding my breath just incase.
Desperate to see a message, praying,
to who? Longing for his return. Safe return.
Unscathed, untouched mentally
and physically by the demands of his job. Read more...
Poetry - Still They Fight The Fight By David Delaney
They walk the shifting sand
like those who went before,
now in that ancient land
still fighting in a war.
They once again defend,
the young answer the call,
joined by their Kiwi friends,
they're ANZAC's proud and tall
Poetry - Walk Away By Shaun Heesom
Walk away, seems it's easy for you
Take our dreams our hopes our plans
And walk away
Don't look back, you might not like the view
Take your words and lies, your nonchalance too
Just walk away
Go hide your face in your hands