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Visiting Poet and Writer

John Irving Clarke – Visiting Poet and Writer, Friday 11th March

A letter from John...

We all have our own stories to tell: who we are, where we came from and where we are headed. And we deprive our young people if we don’t give them the opportunity to develop their literacy and oracy skills to tell those stories.

The author, Phillip Pullman has urged teachers to tell stories, Gervase Phinn encourages the “dipping of pupils into a pool of language,” and years ago, the poet Ted Hughes regarded stories as “huge charges of reality.”

During my visit to Collegiate University Collegiate School, I was happy to share stories with Y8 pupils about my school football team, the birth of my son and my trips to America. I was even happier to encourage the pupils to talk and write about their best days ever and how abstract nouns can become people when we write hence, “Bravery was my best friend.” We also had stories of sitting on the grass making daisy chains and poems about Hope being a constant consolation.

And as always on these occasions, it was a privilege to be there.

John Irving Clarke

Details of John’s novel for Young Adults can be found at:

Who the Hell is Ricky Bell? - Currock Press


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