Practiced throughout history – in every culture and on every continent – poetry speaks to our common humanity and our shared values, transforming the simplest of poems into a powerful catalyst for dialogue and peace.
UNESCO first adopted 21 March as World Poetry Day during its 30th General Conference in Paris 1999, with the aim of supporting linguistic diversity through poetic expression and increasing the opportunity for endangered languages to be heard. World Poetry Day is the occasion to honour poets, revive oral traditions of poetry recitals, promote the reading, writing and teaching of poetry, foster the convergence between poetry and other arts such as theatre, dance, music and painting, and raise the visibility of poetry in the media.
Poetry can also be therapeutic for both its writers and its readers. It can give us advice about how to live teach us important lessons about the past. Through the skilful use of language, metaphor and symbolism, poetry expresses human feelings in a way that day to day conversations doesn't.
Today our Head Boy, Zachary Valentine, who is a great lover of poetry, had accepted our petition of reading one of his favourite poems, “I wandered lonely as a cloud” from Williams Wordsworth, who reads like that:
Check out the video to hear him reading it out loud in our lovely gardens.