The killing of Sophie Lancaster…

I listened to this on the way home from Lochgilphead today- wonderful, powerful emotional stuff.

The Killing of Sophie Lancaster is an elegy to the young gap-year student who was attacked in Stubbeylee Park, Bacup, Lancashire. She later died on August 24th 2007. This is an elegy to mark the anniversary of her death, four years later. Aged twenty, Sophie suffered fatal injuries while cradling her boyfriend Rob’s head in an attempt to protect him from a ferocious attack by a group of youths. Rob survived but Sophie went into a coma and never recovered.

The story is told by her mother, and poetry written in ‘Sophie’s voice’ by Simon Armitage.

Poetry enough to make me stop the car to wipe away the tears…

A story of a vibrant young life wasted- because of the way she looked. Listen to it on the i player!

I didn’t do sport.
I didn’t do meat.
Don’t ask me to wear that dress:
I shan’t.
Why ask me to toe the line,
I can’t.
I was slight or small
but never petite,
and nobody’s fool;
no Barbie doll;
no girlie girl.
I was lean and sharp,
not an ounce of fat
on my thoughts or my limbs.
In my difficult teens
I was strange, I was odd,
– aren’t we all –
there was something different down at the core.
Boy bands and pop tarts left me cold,
let’s say
that I marched to the beat
of a different drum,
sang another tune,
wandered at will
through the market stalls
humming protest songs.

I wore studded dog leads
around my wrist,
and was pleased as punch
in the pit, at the gig,
to be singled out
by a shooting star
of saliva from Marilyn Manson’s lips.

But for all that stuff
in many ways an old fashioned soul,
quite at home
in my own front room,
on my own settee.
I read, I wrote,
I painted, I drew.
Where it came from
no one knows
but it flowed. It flowed.

3 thoughts on “The killing of Sophie Lancaster…

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