Thursday, 18 March 2010

Carol Ann Duffy meets David Beckham...

Carol Ann Duffy is well known for choosing perhaps more unusual subjects for her poetry. Yet this time, she has gone even further, straying into the nation's favourite pastime with observations about their favourite hero. Yes, it is David Beckham, scarcely out of the tabloid headlines, who has made it into Duffy's latest poem. As the footballing community weeps over his latest injury, a torn achilles that will keep him out of the World Cup, Duffy explores both the mythological background of the achilles, and its current association. Here is 'Achilles' by Carol Ann Duffy:

Myth's river - where his mother 
dipped him, fished him, a 
slippery golden boy flowed on,
his name on its lips. 
Without him, it was prophesied,
they would not take Troy.

Women hid him, concealed him
in girls' sarongs; days of
sweetmeats, spices, silver

But when Odysseus came, with
an athlete's build, a sword and a
shield, he followed him to the
battlefield, the crowd's roar,

And it was sport, not war, his
charmed foot on the ball...

But then his heel, his heel, his heel...

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