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Still my beating mind

Frances' Poem, Poetry Prize, 8-11 years

Marcia Williams' POETRY PRIZE, 8-11 years


Who created it?

Frances, age 10



"I am ten years-old and I play the violin and the piano. I am in the school choir. I REALLY enjoy reading and get through about 2-3 books a week. I am in fierce competition with another girl at school to see how many words we can read by the Summer Holidays."


My creative response

I’ve Got a Long Way Yet to Travel

I’ve got a long way yet to travel, a long way still to go.

I must calm my beating mind and walk very, very slow.

My thoughts are racing still angry, hot and red,

My eyes are closed with rage, but I must be careful where I tread.


My mind is burning with indignation

And my eyes are rubbed a very deep crimson.

The ground is scorched by my burning thoughts.

I have not walked far enough.


My anger is cooling down it is now a shade of rose,

I am starting to think of poetry, not boring, plain, old prose.

My clothes are turning russet, from all the squelchy mud,

I think about my rage and send out the whirling flood.


My indignation’s pink, not that old deep, dark red,

But my anger still is beating deep inside my head.

The fury now is shrinking and I am happily skipping.

My indignation is all burnt off, as I pass the piggy’s trough.


I want to twirl around with joy, like a child with their favourite toy.

I giggle with laughter and I am the sun,

All I can think of is fun, fun, FUN!

I say “Hi!” to two birds; and “Good day!” to a third, but they all went flying away.


I laughed and I giggled, I tumbled and jumped.

I didn’t cry, even when I got bumped.

I ran and I sprinted out of the wood,

Even though it was raining I threw back my hood.


I ran right over the garden gate, through the bushes (that was great).

I knocked on the door to be let back in,

“There you are, after that din,” said my mum,

Then hugged me once and I was cured of all glum.


I shouted out loud (for the whole world to hear)

“I am the happiest person and I am standing right here!"

“… a turn or two I’ll walk, To still my beating mind.”



About my creative response

“My teacher told my class about the competition and we started writing and drawing our responses. She showed us some examples from famous authors. I took inspiration from Katharine Orton’s poem. I took the idea of it turning from Marcia Williams's Artwork. The turning of the writing represents the ‘a turn or two’ part of the quote. The colour lightens as the poem spirals inwards symbolising how the anger calms down as the poem goes on.”


What does this Shakespeare quote mean to you?

"To me the quote means that the person is stressed and angry so decides to think over the happenings of the day by taking a walk. I find that when I have stamped my foot several times, punched and kicked my pillow and slammed the door a few times then I feel a lot better."

"When I am angry I storm off to my room and slam the door - much to the annoyance of my mum (she even once threatened to have my door taken off its hinges so that I wouldn’t have a door to slam) – and start reading a really good book until I finish the book or can be bothered to move, by which time it is tea time. By doing this I calm my mind and control my anger. By reading I can leave my own world and join someone else’s."


What is your favourite Shakespeare play and why?

"My favourite play is A Midsummer Night’s Dream because I think Bottom’s name and nature are funny."