A poem is not necessarily the work of an individual, and young writers can sometimes gain confidence and a sense of pride from a group effort. Huw Humphreys explains how this poem was written after his class had talked about their early impressions of God. The children suggested the order of the ideas and the layout. This subject suits the collaborative approach, and the sharing of thoughts has given unity to the poem. I like the variety of ideas, the combination of the childlike and the mature, and the progress towards the moving last line.
When I was little I thought
Was nice, and kind to people
Who need Him.
That he gave you a house when you needed one,
Like Father Christmas,
And babies to Mums whenever they wished for them.
That he lived in a castle, in a big house in heaven, or in Spain,
In the clouds.
That when God cried it rained and thunder was His throne
And lightning were sparks
From the welding of pearly gates,
And the sun was God's torch
Or heaven's lunchtime.
I thought He was married to the queen
And that people who died climbed stairs to sit on clouds
For a while
And that I was always going to be His child.
Year 6, aged between 10 and 11, receive "Why is the Sky?", edited by John Agard (Faber). Submitted by Huw Humphreys of Penrhos Primary School, Swansea, who receives a set of Poetry Society posters with teacher's notes. Please send students' poems to The TES, Admiral House, 66-68 East Smithfield, London E1 9XY Moniza Alvi, this term's guest poet, was born in Pakistan and brought up in Hertfordshire. She has published two collections, "The Country at My Shoulder" and "A Bowl of Warm Air".
Year 6 at Penrhos Primary, Swansea