Matt Harvey: Official Poet in Residence of the 2010 Wimbledon Championships

Matt Harvey, author of Shopping with Dad, is the Official Poet in Residence of the 2010 Wimbledon Championships where he'll be writing about 'the grass, umpires, people having their first Wimbledon strawberries, line judges, day dreams, pressure, Fred Perry's statue, the roof, the falcon and the queue.'  We love his poem 'Thwok' which captures tennis in all its onamatopoeic splendour!

Here is Poem: Thwok!

a game in the life

bounce bounce bounce bounce
thwackety wackety zingety ping
hittety backety pingety zang
wack, thwok, thwack, pok, ,
thwikety, thwekity, thwokity, thwakity
cover the court with alarming alacrity
smackety dink, smackety dink
boshety bashity crotchety crashety
up loops a lob with a teasing temerity
leaps in the air in defiance of gravity
puts it away with a savage severity
coupled with suavity
(reaches for towel with a certain serenity)

bounce, bounce, bounce, bounce
thwack, thwok, plak, plok
come to the nettety
bit of a liberty
quickly regrettety
up goes a lobbity
hoppety skippety
awkwardly backwardly
slippety trippety
tumble & sprawl
audible gasps…
(opponent asks how is he?
courtesy, nice to see
getting up gingerly
brushity thighsity
all, if you’re asking me
bit big-girls-blousity)

bounce bounce bounce
whack, thwok, plik, plok
into the corner, then down the linety
chasety downity, whackety backety
all on the runnity, crossety courtety
dropety vollety – quality, quality…
… oh I say what impossible gettery
no, umpirical rulery – nottety uppity –
oooh – doesn’t look happety
back to the baseline
muttery muttery muttery muttery

bounce, bounce, bounce,
thwacketty OUT
bounce, bounce, bounce,
thwacketty BLEEP
2nd serve
bounce, bounce, bounce,
thwacketty – slappity
thwackety thumpity
dinkety-clinkety, gruntity-thumpity
fistety pumpety, fistety pumpety COME ON!

quiet please
bounce, bounce, bounce,
thwacketty thwoketty
bashetty boshetty
clashety closhety
lookaty linety, lookaty line-judge
line judge nodity
wearily query
umpire upholdery, indicate inchery
insult to injury
give line-judge scrutiny
face full of mutiny,
back to the baseline
through gritted teethery
muttery mutiny mutiny muttery

bounce bounce bounce
thwak, thwok, thwak, plok
thwakety plik, thwoketty plak
to-ity fro-ity fro-ity to-ity
slowity quickety quickety slowity
turnety headety, headety turnity
leftety rightety leftety rightety
seems like we’ve been here a bloomin eternity
rightety leftety rightety leftety
topety spinnety, backhandy slicety
lookety watchety, scratchety bottity
fabulous forehand, backhandy slicety
furious forehand, savagely slicety
fearsome ferocity, vicious velocity
bilious backhand – blasted so blistery…
…half a mile out but that line judge is history

new balls please

Have you heard this poem before?  Now you can listen to it at:

 Read more of Matt Harvey!

Follow him on twitter @wimbledonpoet.

“You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me.” — C. S. Lewis

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