Interview with Poet Darell Philip

Matthew Toffolo: What is the theme of your poem?

Darell Philip: Inspirational and rememberance

2) What motivated you to write this poem?

26th March 2020, 8pm, would be an evening which would go down in history as millions of people across the UK would clap for our brave NHS workers putting their lives on the line for the country during the global Coronavirus pandemic. I wanted to document this moment in British history.

3) How long have you been writing poetry?

Since childhood – writing has been my life.

4) If you could have dinner with one person (dead or alive), who would that be?

In light of the current Covid-19 crisis I’d say Mary Seacole – a pioneer in nursing who put her own life at risk by going to the battlefield where she treated wounded British soldiers during the Crimean War which took place from 1853-1856.

5) What influenced you to submit to have your poetry performed by a professional actor?

I thought it would be really cool to bring the poem to life and so decided to have a professional actor do that and I was not disappointed!

6) Do you write other works? scripts? Short Stories? Etc..?

I’m also a freelance journalist and have written for a few various newspapers, magazines and websites.

7) What is your passion in life?

Writing is my passion. The great reformer, Martin Luther once said, “If you want to change the world, then pick up your pen and write,” which is what I hope to achieve each time I write.

Watch the Poetry Reading: 

Performed by Allison Kampf

Windows opened
Mum and I screaming at the top of our…
You know, that organ which
Mr Corona makes the point of his attack
Our voices in unison with the carnival of faces
Hand clapping together among our block
For those brave front liners
Robed in white and blue
Their lives risking for Queen and Country
For me and you

A sign in a window reads
Hang in there Hackney
Locked down, stuck in isolation
Longing to be free
Hooting and beeping cars drive by
An outpouring of love filling the illuminous sky
Dethroning Mr Corona from his royal seat
His nasty legacy we will surely defeat

An unusual crescendo took place that night
The community together an awesome sight
It was to everyone’s most absolute delight
To see Mr Corona given a most chilling fright
For all the lives he’s cruelly taken away
For all those families we kneel and pray
Our frontline heroes – relics of the past
For you we clap knowing this too shall past

The morning after the night before
A bright smile beams across the sky
As a reminder of that glorious day soon to come
When from this earth with angel’s wings
We take off and fly.

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