Rosen Very Ill/Bristol Poet Celebration – Poetry News Roundup March 31st

Today in our poetry news round-up we look at the poet Michael Rosen who is ill in hospital and the poet genius who will be celebrated in Bristol.

Michael Rosen “Very Poorly” Says Family

As children all over the country will be hoping to spot bears in peoples windows as they get some exercise, and go on a bear hunt – inspired by the book “We’re going on a bear hunt” the authors family have confirmed that he is currently in hospital. His condition was initially described as “very poorly” and he spent a night in intensive care over the weekend. He has since been moved to a ward as his condition has become more stable. It is unknown if this is as a result of Coronavirus or not.

Michael Rosen, who is 73, and served as the Children’s laureate from 2007 to 2009 is well known for his legendary writing for children which includes the classic We’re going on a bear hunt. He is also known for his poetry.

Fans of the author and poet, including fellow author Cressida Cowell, took to social media to wish him well and offer up their hopes that he has a speedy recovery.

Poet Genius Who Died Aged 17 Celebrated in Bristol

250 years after his death, the poet Thomas Chatterton is to be remembered in a range of projects and exhibitions that will make his life, and death. Bristol-born Chatterton is often forgotten but he was revered by his fellow poets including Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Percy Bysshe Shelly and William Wordsworth.

The planned celebrations include new poems that have been commissioned for the occasion that have been based on a painting by Henry Wallis which depicts the poet on his deathbed following a fatal dose of arsenic. There will also be a comic book that will tell the poet’s life story. A competition to design a monument to Chatterton will also take place.

The main aim, however, of the events, which are being created under the title A Poetic City, is to raise the profile of one of Bristol’s most famous sons. Despite the fact that to many he is known as the father of Romantic poetry and the many years of interest that poets and artists have had for him, he is not very well-known in Bristol.

Born in 1752 Chatterton was an only child who spent many hours near a tomb in the local churchyard writing and reading. He was a precocious child who created the persona of a 15th-century monk for himself. Under the name Thomas Rowley, his imaginary persona, he wrote poems, letters and even produced maps.

He died in 1770 and his death is surrounded in mystery. For some considerable time it was believed that he took his own life however it is the belief of modern academics that his death may in fact have been an accident.

His death resulted in the great Romantic poets becoming big fans of his work at a time when Britain was moving into a more industrial age. They were inspired by the fact that under the name Thomas Rowley he took a look back at the medieval period. Despite his young age, his views on politics were radical; he was very much against the establishment and slavery.

You must register to comment. Log in or Register.