Simon Armitage

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Simon Armitage (born May 26, 1963) is an English poet, playwright and novelist from Huddersfield. A selection of his poetry forms part of the GCSE syllabus for English Literature.


  • "it says NO NEWS IS GOOD NEWS
    but it don't say why."
    • 'Killing Time (Millenium Poem)', from Killing Time.

  • "My party piece:
    I strike, then from the moment when the matchstick
    conjures up its light, to when the brightness moves
    beyond its means, and dies, I say the story
    of my life"
    • '*', from Book Of Matches.

  • "All land lines are down.
    Reports of mobile phones
    are false. One half-excoriated Apple Mac still quotes the Dow Jones."
    • from Convergence of the Twain.

  • "We walk to the ward from the badly parked car
    with your grandma taking four short steps to our two.
    We have brought her here to die and we know it."
    • 'November', from Zoom.

  • "Where does the hand become the wrist?
    where does the neck become the shoulder? The watershed
    and then the weight, whatever turns up and tips us over that
    razor's edge
    between something and nothing, between
    one and the other."
    • 'Gooseberry Season', from Kid.

  • "Here's how they rated him when the looked back:
    sometimes he did this, sometimes he did that."
    • 'Poem', from Kid.

  • "I've made out a will: I'm leaving myself
    to the National Health. I'm sure they can use
    the jellies and tubes and syrups and glues..."
    • '*', from Book Of Matches.

  • "Ignite the flares, connect the phones, wind all the clocks;
    the sun goes rusty like a medal in its box -
    collect it from the loft. Peg out the stars,
    replace the bulbs of Jupiter and Mars.
    A man like that takes something with him when he dies,
    but he has wept the coins that rested on his eyes,
    eased out the stopper from the mouthpiece of the cave,
    exhumed his own white body from the grave."
    • '*', from Book Of Matches.

  • "Mother, any distance greater than a single span
    requires a second pair of hands."
    • '*', from Book Of Matches.

  • "That heart had been an apple once, they reckoned. Green.
    They had a scheme to plant an apple there again
    beginning with a pip, but he rejected it."
    • 'Man with a Golf Ball Heart', from The Dead Sea Poems.

  • "Right here you made an angel of yourself,
    free-falling backwards into last night's snow,
    indenting a straight, neat, crucified shape,
    then flapping your arms, one stroke, a great bird,
    to leave the impression of wings. It worked."
    • 'A Glory', from Cloudcuckooland.

  • "Think, two things on their own and both at once."
    • 'Homecoming', from Cloudcuckooland.

  • "In a life, most of us turn no more than 45 degrees. Not much
    compared to those who turn full-circle in the slighest breeze
    or those who totally uncoil, but enough in the end
    to tell a bag of diamonds from a sack of coal."
    • 'Crux', from Cloudcuckooland.

  • "Boy with the name and face I don't remember,
    you can stop shouting now, I can still hear you."
    • 'The Shout', from The Universal Home Doctor.

  • "Lifetimes went past. With the critical mass
    of hardly more than the thought of a thought
    I kept on, headlong, to vanishing point.
    I looked for an end, for some dimension
    to hold hard and resist. But I still exist."
    • 'Incredible', from The Universal Home Doctor.

External links[edit]

Wikipedia has an article about:

Academic achievement - GCSE Summer revision courses