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Untold Stories: Poetry at English Heritage

Untold Stories – Poetry at English Heritage took place in the autumn of 2020. Through new commissions, a poetry exchange and a public competition the programme allowed us to experience English Heritage sites in new ways and offered opportunities for everyone to explore our past through poetry. The programme was co-curated by Jacob Sam-La Rose, English Heritage’s Poet in Residence. This digital anthology brings together a collection of works written as part of the programme. It features poems written in Shout Out Loud workshops led by Malika Booker; as part of the Untold Stories Poetry Competition; and by commissioned poets Esme Allman, Nii Ayikwei Parkes, Jay Bernard, Malika Booker, Safiya Kamaria Kinshasa and Jacob Sam-La Rose. english-heritage.org.uk/untold-stories

Untold Stories – Poetry at English Heritage took place in the autumn of 2020. Through new commissions, a poetry exchange and a public competition the programme allowed us to experience English Heritage sites in new ways and offered opportunities for everyone to explore our past through poetry. The programme was co-curated by Jacob Sam-La Rose, English Heritage’s Poet in Residence.

This digital anthology brings together a collection of works written as part of the programme. It features poems written in Shout Out Loud workshops led by Malika Booker; as part of the Untold Stories Poetry Competition; and by commissioned poets Esme Allman, Nii Ayikwei Parkes, Jay Bernard, Malika Booker, Safiya Kamaria Kinshasa and Jacob Sam-La Rose.

english-heritage.org.uk/untold-stories

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inspired by: Goodshaw Chapel<br />

Goodshaw<br />

k<strong>at</strong>ie-ann miles<br />

When we think of where<br />

it is said th<strong>at</strong> faith resides,<br />

should we think of grand c<strong>at</strong>hedrals?<br />

Of towers, and bells, and steeples?<br />

Or think of You.<br />

The congreg<strong>at</strong>ion. A sculpture of<br />

a new life carved from repudiant stone.<br />

Of the tenderness of morning<br />

light through unstained glass.<br />

Scuffs from children’s feet<br />

on wooden pews.<br />

Wh<strong>at</strong> did it take,<br />

to build faith, here?<br />

Th<strong>at</strong> deep, refusing faith.<br />

A necessary sacrifice,<br />

so th<strong>at</strong> You may know<br />

your God, all <strong>at</strong> once.<br />

Th<strong>at</strong> deep bre<strong>at</strong>h, long held,<br />

<strong>at</strong> last released.<br />

Wh<strong>at</strong> did it mean to marry here?<br />

To love and to live and to die here?<br />

To greet Him, an old friend<br />

in both waking and sleep.<br />

To be buried in the soil<br />

of the garden You tended.<br />

To return, <strong>at</strong> the end of it all,<br />

here, and only here.<br />

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