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Poem reveals Golspie High School pupils' lockdown feelings

By Caroline McMorran

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A POIGNANT poem has given an insight into how Golspie High School pupils are coping with isolation and lockdown.

Entitled ‘It’s so quiet out here – then I notice’, the poem was compiled by a S2 Helmsdale student after fellow pupils were asked to give a written snapshot of their feelings and experiences of lockdown.

Clive Grewcock, a children’s services worker at the school, was involved in the project and has praised pupils for their resilience and for the way they have risen to the challenge of learning in lockdown.

Children’s services worker and English language enthusiast Clive Grewcock.
Children’s services worker and English language enthusiast Clive Grewcock.

He said: “The poem is tremendous and very poignant.”

It came about after Mr Grewcock moved online a lunch club – called Doodles and Chill – he had previously run in school.

“Even though everyone is around online, a number of pupils were struggling with the lack of a physical school community,” said Mr Grewcock.

I decided to go virtual with Doodles and Chill to give pupils and staff a chance to link with each other, post thoughts, sketches and open up discussion.

“On April 21, a request was posted in the virtual Doodles & Chill classroom asking for comments about what pupils were seeing, feeling or experiencing during lockdown.

“The response from pupils and staff was tremendous and very poignant. Comments were also taken from those linked to Golspie High School.”

Under Mr Grewcock’s guidance, the Helmsdale student took the posts and turned them into a moving poem.

Pupils wrote about being “trapped indoors” and feeling as if they were in jail. They spoke about their communities being turned into “ghost towns” but also about hearing birdsong and about missing their colleagues, friends and family.

One line reads: “You don’t realise how soon boring life can get when you aren’t able to do the things you are normally allowed to do.”

Mr Grewcock said that the poem demonstrated how pupils had really “shone under adverse circumstances".

School Poem

Here is the full poem:

It’s so quiet out here – then I notice

Trapped indoors. It felt like being in jail.

There is no one around. The place was like

A ghost town. Haunted by elusive ghosts

Of free sunlight slithered down the long road

Slowly vanishing. It seemed very warm

Out there. But we all know, obviously

No one can experience that right now.

I’m lucky and a little bit lonely.

It’s so quiet out here –then I notice

The birdsong, so diverse and beautiful.

All is quiet, but peaceful listening to

The sharp ear splitting chirps of my budgies,

Not seeing the other people close by is

Mind shattering.

Finding that inspiration is a great thing.

You don’t realise how soon boring life

Can get when you aren’t able to do the things

You are normally allowed to do

(I’m talking, shouting, clapping about this

Coronavirus lockdown). You now pay

Attention to way more things, hoping it

Will capture, cheer you up or distract you

From what is happening in the real world.

The way sunlight wakes, moves across places

In the house. Something I have seldom seen

For some time. Looking up into branches

Of a tree, I’m reading by the window

Enjoying moments as the warm sun lights

Up the pages. Sun is bright, the wind is

Is getting warmer, Sherbie dog and horses

Being spoiled and I am slowly getting

To grips with this new way of working.

Chromebook ... Complicated technology

Receiving messages from distant friends.

Doing college work whilst re-watching my

Favourite show Riverdale on Netflix J

Eating soup, basking in the aroma

Of fresh baked bread, still doing college but

Now listening to music on Youtube

While on a welcome phone call to friends that

I miss very much … Not seeing

Family is so heartbreaking trapped in

The place I call home. Football becomes a

Distant memory, Stuck staring at a road

Making a doll and drawing some of my

OCs so I then can cosplay them later.

I really miss my colleagues, friends and

Family but smile when I think of them.

Peacefully reading here in the sun.

Warm sun on fair skin. The wind continued

To gently rattle the branches, causing

It to lean back and forth. It swatted the

Thin air. I sat there, watching carefully.

Help me. The chocolate is running out!!!

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