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30 minutes
First broadcast:
Sunday 05 May 2013

Roger McGough with a varied selection of poetry requests.
Poems of praise to the lowly and the heavenly, including work by George Barker and RS Thomas who were both born one hundred years ago this year. RS Thomas's 'A Marriage' is tender and moving; "We met under a shower of bird notes", and he analyses the powerful stillness of the atmosphere 'In Church.' Poems by another priest poet, Gerard Manley Hopkins also feature, with his sonnet to Felix Randall, which he wrote after the death of a parishioner of his while he was a priest in Liverpool, as well as 'God's Grandeur'. There will be many secular exultations too though, with Les Murray paying homage to the bed, Emily Dickinson to the sea and a paean to the music of Bach by the Swedish poet Lars Gustafsson. With readings by John Mackay and guest poets Leontia Flynn and Paula Meehan.
Producer: Sarah Langan.

  • This Week's Poems


    A Marriage         

    By R S Thomas

    From R S Thomas – Collected Later Poems 1988-2000

    Publisher: Bloodaxe


    In Church            

    By R S Thomas

    From R S Thomas – Selected Poems 1946-1968

    Publisher: Granada


    Gerard Manley - Hopkins

    By Leontia Flynn



    Felix Randal       

    By Gerard Manley Hopkins

    From Hopkins – Poems and Prose

    Publisher: Everyman



    By Jen Hadfield

    From Nigh-No-Place

    Publisher: Bloodaxe


    Prayer to Saint Grobianus           

    By Roger McGough

    From Roger McGough – Collected Poems

    Publisher: Viking


    Homage to the Launching Place

    By Les Murray

    From Les Murray – Collected Poems

    Publisher: Carcanet


    My Sister Lets Down Her Hair    

    By Paula Meehan

    From Dharmakaya

    Publisher: Carcanet


    To My Mother  

    By George Barker

    From George Barker – Selected Poems

    Publisher: Faber


    Cyd Charisse     

    By Leontia Flynn

    From Profit and Loss

    Publisher: Cape Poetry


    God's Grandeur               

    By Gerard Manley Hopkins

    From Hopkins – Poems and Prose

    Publisher: Everyman


    Exultation is the Going  

    By Emily Dickinson

    From The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson

    Publisher: Faber



    By Seamus Heaney

    From The Spirit Level

    Publisher: Faber


    The Stillness of the World Before Bach  

    By Lars Gustafsson

    Translated by Philip Martin

    From The Stillness of the World Before Bach: New Selected Poems

    Publisher: New Directions




Roger McGough
John MacKay
Leontia Flynn
Paula Meehan


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