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I hear footsteps

I hid in the tree.

Suddenly I hear a gunshot

luckily he missed me

but he reloaded the gun

Bang! I fell.

Blood pouring.

His dog grabbed me

and took me to him.



Harry Murphy

Orford Primary





The Poem of the Gun

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I asked the class to write down a list of things you might find in the landscape. Harry made a brilliant list in four neat columns on a sheet of A4 - voles, nettles, barbed wire, fungus, hornet, pylons, gun. 'Gun?' I asked, 'Is your father a gamekeeper?' (this being a rural village primary school). 'No, he's a carpenter,' he replied, 'he just likes shooting pigeons and pheasants'.


So it really startled me when Harry imagined his poem from the other side of the gun barrel – from the point of view of the hunted bird. He watches steadily and writes it straight and true, without sentiment, as the dog brings back the bird. Terrific!


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