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Poetry Please
Sunday 16:30-17:00
Saturday (rpt) 23:00-23:30
The poems you want to hear
Contact us
If you'd like to suggest a particular poem for possible inclusion in the programme, contact us 

On the 20th July, we will be live at the Latitude music and arts festival in Suffolk.  With that in mind, are there any poems about rock 'n' roll, or festivals, parties, parades, fiestas, fairs, carnivals or generally about having fun in the sun, that you would like to hear?  Let us know - and don't forget to tell us the reasons behind your choices.

Sunday 1 June 1630 (Rpt Saturday 7 June 2330)
Listen to this programme in full
Roger McGough
You can scroll down to the bottom of the page to see what's coming up.

    Featured poems
    We celebrate the arrival of the outdoor season with a programme recorded last week at the 2008 Guardian Hay Festival. The featured poems reflect something of the borders between Wales and England: the English side is represented by Alfred Noyes and the Welsh poetry chosen from listeners’ requests includes work by Dannie Abse, Sheenagh Pugh and RS Thomas. Roger was joined on stage by readers Manon Edwards and Richard Mitchley, and by Gwyneth Lewis who reads some of her own poetry and one by her fellow poet, Christopher Meredith, whose work she particularly admires.

    The Birthright by Eiluned Lewis
    From: Anglo-Welsh Poetry 1480-1990
    Publ: seren

    The View from the Window RS Thomas
    From: Selected Poems 1946-1968
    Publ: Granada

    Wizards by Alfred Noyes
    From: Poetry of the Transition 1850-1914
    Publ: Oxford University Press

    All Day it Has Rained by Alun Lewis
    From: The Oxford Book of War Poetry
    Publ: Oxford

    Poem of the Week. Click on the title to read the text.
    Words by Edward Thomas
    From: The Collected Poems of Edward Thomas
    Publ: Oxford

    How to Knit a Poem by Gwyneth Lewis
    Not yet published

    Memorial Sweater by Gwyneth Lewis
    Not yet published

    These two poems only feature in the Saturday night edition
    Knitting Needles by Roger McGough
    Not Yet Published
    Nana’s Knitting Needles by Roger McGough
    Not Yet Published

    Mother Tongue by Gwyneth Lewis
    From: Keeping Mum
    Publ: Bloodaxe

    My Father was Distant by Gwyneth Lewis
    From: Keeping Mum
    Publ: Bloodaxe

    This poem only features in the Saturday night edition.
    A Past by Gwyneth Lewis
    From: Keeping Mum
    Publ: Bloodaxe

    What Flight Meant by Christoper Meredith
    From: The Meaning of Flight
    Publ: seren

    Welsh Love Letter by Michael Burn
    From: Poems as an Accompaniment to a Life
    Pub: Michael Russell

    This poem only features in the Saturday night edtion.
    Preseli Blue by Caroline Gill
    From: The Lie of the Land
    Publ: Cinnamon Press

    Sometimes by Sheenagh Pugh
    From: Selected Poems
    Publ: seren
    Coming Up
    8th June 2008
    During the 1940s and 1950s, the BBC – possibly quite unwittingly – employed a number of poets. These men, most notably Louis MacNeice, Anthony Thwaite, D.G. Bridson and Terence Tiller, were radio producers and one of the programme engineers who remembers working with them has written to Poetry Please to ask to hear some of their work. MacNeice’s work features regularly on the programme and this is an opportunity to feature work by his fellow BBC poets.

    15th June 2008
    This week’s programme includes an intriguing “English ghazal”, -  the ghazal being a Middle-Eastern verse form not normally associated with English.

    22nd June 2008
    A couple of splendid women feature in this week’s requests: from the Archives, Dame Edith Evans reads from Lewis Carroll and the spiritual writer Rabindranath Tagore, and Fleur Adcock makes a memorable poem out of a casual rejection slip.

    29th June 2008
    Edgar Allen Poe’s poem ‘The Raven’ made him an international star before his death. Roger McGough introduces requests for poems with a distinctly Gothic and funereal flavour.

    6th July 2008
    Alexander Pope was renowned for his biting satire. But other aspects of his personality are also revealed, as Roger McGough introduces requests for his work, including the narrative love poem, ‘Eloisa to Abelard’.
    13th July 2008
    Ballads are poems that roll along whilst telling a story. Roger McGough introduces requests for some classics, including the sorry tale of ‘Sir Patrick Spens’.

    On 20th July we’re live from the music and arts festival ‘Latitude’ in Suffolk as Roger is joined on stage by poets, actors and other interesting artists to read your poetry requests.
    Please make your rock 'n' roll poetry requests by contacting us here
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