Surya’s pandemic poem wins place in new book

Surya’s pandemic poem wins place in new book

A poem by QE pupil Surya Senthilkumar is being published this month in a special anthology created to raise spirits during the coronavirus crisis.

Year 8 boy Surya’s poem, The Pathway to Triumph!, was selected to feature in an international collection of writing from the Young Writers organisation entitled Write To Unite – Together We Stand.

Young Writers Editorial Manager Jenni Harrison said the anthology aimed to “spread positivity, give thanks, share stories, purge worries and record [contributors’] thoughts during lockdown.

“It’s history in the making and will make an incredible keepsake of an unprecedented time,” she said, adding that more than 4,000 adults, children and families had been involved in the project, contributing writing in various genres.

Surya’s 10-line poem, which is set out below, includes a call for unity – “Only as one will we overcome this disaster” – and a paean to front-line workers battling the virus – “Let us praise the NHS staff at toil”.

Asked for his reaction to his success, he adapted the last line of his poem, saying: “Endeavour from the beginning, and you shall succeed till the end!”

Surya’s triumph comes as GCSE poetry workshops led by QE’s poet-in-residence Anthony Anaxagorou get under way at the School again, helping to develop boys’ creative thinking and writing skills ahead of their English GCSE. Old Elizabethan Anthony (1994–1999) made headlines last month when he spoke out against a Government announcement that poetry was to become optional in next year’s GCSE English examination.

For every copy of the book sold by Young Writers, £1 will be donated to NHS Charities Together. Young Writers is an organisation that has been promoting poetry and creative writing within schools and through poetry competitions for the past 29 years.


The Pathway to Triumph

For the nation, we have loved for years,
Our faith and effort shall polish away the tears,
Thy actions must roar wiseness and care,
Avoiding the faces of sorrow and despair,
Only as one will we overcome this disaster,
By being resolute we can prevent the spread faster,
Let us praise the NHS staff at toil,
Valiant and loving, holding our nation up like soil,
So, let us conquer this misfortune together,
By being wise and cooperative, we continue to endeavour!