Celebrating National Poetry Day

National Poetry Day logoToday is National Poetry Day and as patron of the Liverpool Wavertree based The Reader charity’s North West programme, I would like to share a poem from its collection on change that I found particularly moving.

The Reader, based in Calderstones Park, has over the last 10 years pioneered the use of Shared Reading to improve well-being, reduce social isolation and build resilience in diverse communities across the UK and beyond.

You can turn up and join any of the shared reading groups or even volunteer to lead a reading group. Just click here to find out more.

This short poem by the British poet Penelope Shuttle evokes the pride a parent takes in their child growing into an adult but also the sadness at the speed of change. Every moment matters.



by Penelope Shuttle

It is both sad and a relief to fold so carefully

her outgrown clothes and line up the little worn shoes

of childhood, so prudent, scuffed and particular.

It is both happy and horrible to send them galloping

back tappity-tap along the misty chill path into the past.

It is both a freedom and a prison, to be outgrown

by her as she towers over me as thin as a sequin

in her doc martens and her pretty skirt,

because just as I work out how to be a mother

she stops being a child.


If you enjoyed that, you might like to download the full poetry collection by clicking here.