Really I got in a little too early with my T S Eliot quote on my last post (the title is stolen from Eliot’s The Four Quartets) – for today is National Poetry Day and apparently Tom is the nation’s favourite poet. Tom’s got a lot to answer for in my own life – reading The Waste Land when I was 16 was the reason I made the decision to do an English Degree – but I was a little surprised, I confess, by his win (please, please don’t tell me it was for the cat poems…).  He’s bloody brilliant – but you can’t exactly hug him to your heart.

But then any list is going to be subjective and lacking many more worthy winners than it can possibly hold – me, I was a little sad to see Ted Hughes and W H Auden missing. Not to get me started on Wordsworth and Byron. Or indeed Carol Ann Duffy and Simon Armitage. And since I’m here, where was Seamus Heaney (who I would have thought would have been a shoe-in for the top ten)?.

And then – well, how does one ever see past the spectre of William Shakespeare?

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