BBC Learning Zone Clips

CLIP 1305

John Clare - 'First Love'

John Clare - 'First Love'
Key Info
  • John Clare - 'First Love'
  • Duration: 02:48
  • On a spoof TV show about love, Lily Savage introduces the 'You never forget the first time' slot. Poet John Clare remembers his boyish love for Mary through his poem 'First Love'. The poem is read over a short video in which we see a love-struck lad gazing wistfully at a pretty, innocent-looking lass. The final shots shows petals being taken from a flower and a grave in the churchyard.
  • Subject:



    Poetry: 19th Century

  • Keywords: first love, romance, relationships, poetry, innocence, regret, lost love, rural England, John Clare
Ideas for use in class
  • A good way of introducing, or revising, the poem, or John Clare in general. If the poem has been read before, students could discuss how far the characters in the film reflect their idea of how Clare and Mary should look. Does the approach seem rather sentimental? Is it possible to interpret the poem in a sharper way? What is the significance of the flower and the grave?
Background details
  • Clip language : English
  • Aspect ratio : 4x3

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