Thursday, June 24, 2010

Shakespeare at Large

Well, the first-ever "Championships Poet" of Wimbledon, Matt Harvey, has been given a LOT of material to work with.*

There's the EPIC STORY of the two heroes, John Isner and Nicolas Mahut, who battled it out for over eleven hours on Court 18.

Matt's haiku about the match was a little disappointing. But, man, did he pull out all the stops in the "upside down" sonnet about his kinsman Andy Murray. May the spirit of Shakespeare live on in the Motherland. Cheers.

Check it out:

Great Expectations

The hopes are up, the sharp pencils are out.
Can he end an impatient nation's trophy drought?

We can't know how it feels, such expectation
- one player's shackle is another's spur,
one's hindrance is another's motivation -
but all we cod psychologists concur:

the pressure's on. And though it can't be gauged
in pounds of hope and longing per square inch -
the public's thirst can only be assuaged
by victory. Fred Perry on his plinth -

his stone form buoyed by unforgotten triumphs -
reminds us, we high-expectation-holders,
some reach greatness standing on the backs of giants,
some with giants pressing on their shoulders.**

*If you don't know what I'm talking about, read this article.

**If you want to hear Matt Harvey read his masterful poem, you may do so.

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