Already on week 4, pen and paper ready!


You can already do Anglo-Saxon-style. Now we’ll move the subject matter from fun to Heroically Serious.


(i) Think of someone you admire greatly – someone from history, a family member, a brave soul, footballer, fighter, potter, reformer, anyone.

example : for me, say, Wilma Rudolph, American athlete

(ii) write a short piece about him/her, say 50-100 words, or longer if you like, just an ordinary piece of writing noting things s/he did/overcame/succeeded at. Sometimes it can work well to concentrate on just ONE telling event from a life.

example : sprinter from USA / 3 gold medals at Rome Olympics 1960 / ran into headwind in 100m / fastest woman in the world 1960s / had polio as a child / leg in a brace / home schooled …

(iii) Now be a poet, and write your Hero poem (remember half-lines and alliterations : it’s that simple)

example :

Wilma was the fastest                            woman in the world

when she won in Rome                            running into the wind

but beating allcomers                                  brave and bouncing

when a little girl her leg                                   was girt in a leather brace

but she persevered                           pounding the pavements

til muscles knitted                                   and nerves made good

gliding over the ground                               at the Olympic games



Don’t worry about punctuation, or weird words (like ‘girt’!). Sometimes looking for an alliterating word forces you to do something original and different.

If you want The Saxon Period (rather than my 1960s) all you have to do is research online and find someone you admire from the pre-1066 period.

You have come mighty far. Congratulations on your mini-epic. In Week 5 we’ll be working at the last Big Characteristic of Saxon and Skaldic (Old Icelandic) poetry – the kenning – and going to sea in a ship.

Remember to send any work that you would like looked at to