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Guru Nanak Multi Academy Trust

Renown Poet meets Year 9 Students!

On Wednesday 22nd February, Daljit Nagra, an internationally recognised poet, visited the Year 9s to immerse them in the world of his poetry and answer the burning questions students had after studying his striking poems.

Daljit Nagra was first introduced to poetry at the age of 19. This stimulated Daljit to study poetry for his A Levels and develop his English Literature at evening classes. Encouraged by his enthusiasm for poetry, he decided to move to London to study a BA and MA in English at the Royal Holloway. During his time there, Daljit revealed one of his poems to a lecturer who was particularly positive. However, due to a lack of confidence, he didn’t continue his ambitions for poetry until he was 30 years of age.

His parents are immigrants (Sikh Punjabis) who came from India to Britain in the late 1950s. They worked in a factory until they decided to buy their own shop. These events inspired Daljit to write the poem named 'Singh Song' which the Year 9s have been studying in English.

Singh Song is a first person love poem about a young man and his newly married bride. He manages one of his father's shops but keeps sneaking upstairs to see his wife. In this poem, Daljit Nagra paints a colourful picture of their love and lives, challenging and celebrating stereotypical ideas about Punjabi culture.

When Daljit Nagra presented his poetry and achievements, the Year 9s were extremely eager to learn about what inspired him to write about such topics. Daljit Nagra also explained different poetic techniques and how they can really augment a poem and further develop it. Moreover, the Year 9s enjoyed asking about Daljit's experience in becoming a poet and how he gained the confidence to present his poetry to the world.

In addition to this, selective students were allowed to attend a workshop with Daljit Nagra and improve their understanding of the poetry. This extremely motivated Year 9 students to become creative and explore their imagination. This workshop encouraged them to develop their own poetic style and embrace their own personal voice. It was a great privilege to meet Nagra and because of his exciting visit, we feel like we are ready to delve into GCSE poetry! 

By Nanikha Panesar and Ravneet Ghatora 9KL