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Pearl: Two Fathers, Two Daughters

Reflections on loss and consolation. Simon Armitage's adaptation and translation of the anonymous medieval poem Pearl, read by Iain Glen and Grace Doherty.


Reflections on loss and consolation.

A programme about the special relationship between fathers and daughters, weaving together two voices of grief, one from six hundred years ago and one very much of the present day.

In the heart-breaking medieval poem Pearl a father laments the loss of his daughter, who returns to him in a dream to help him come to terms with her absence. The poem frames the first in-depth interview with Gerry McCann whose daughter Madeleine disappeared from an Algarve holiday apartment in May 2007. In honest, personal and sometimes painful terms, Gerry reflects on the special bond between fathers and daughters, the difficulties men have in articulating sorrow, and his absolute determination to keep looking for Madeleine. The anonymous Pearl poet confirms to us that grief for loved ones is the hardest grief of all as he seeks consolation in the idea of heaven the power of prayer.

"As a family we'd worked with Simon Armitage before and know what a sensitive, thoughtful writer he is. When I read the Pearl poem, I could see echoes in it with Madeleine's situation and our loss. I decided it was a good opportunity to say something about the special bond between fathers and daughters, thinking that speaking openly might help other men in similar positions. It feels like the right time." Gerry McCann .

Pearl is translated and adapted for radio by the poet Simon Armitage and read by Iain Glen and Grace Doherty .
Produced in Salford by Susan Roberts.

58 minutes

Last on

Sat 29 Sep 2018 14:30

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Role Contributor
Reader Iain Glen
Reader Grace Doherty
Translation Simon Armitage
Adaptor Simon Armitage


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