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Wednesday, November 7, 2012

For Jaysus' sake, are yez thick or wha'?

This is my third post about the (free) Tam o'Shanter reboot competition. Basically, write a long narrative poem bringing Robbie Burns wonderful poem up to the 21st century.
After my first submission, which I dashed off one rainy afternoon, I received a mail back from one of the organisers bemoaning the fact that, despite the great quality of the poetry, there had been a dearth of imagination in the entries. Read it here 
So this time I spent several weeks crafting a long poem (which incidentally I shall be submitting to the Guinness Book of Records as the Poem with the most amount of single rhymes in it - 55, I make it) and, such was its effect, that it has elicited an official press release from the organisers -

The great Tam O'Shanter Reboot Competition

“The bonniest lass has tae be mine,
‘else tonight is but a waste o’ time.”
But pullin’ while sober?
That idea wis goin’ nowher’.
Just an example from some of the great lines from the many contributions received so far.
The organiser of the competition and one of the judges, Hugh Lockhart, said,
“We have been very pleased at the response. Quite a number of people have written saying how this competition has stimulated them to write poetry and have discovered they can.  Others have been clearly itching to write a long narrative poem.  The standard is breathtakingly high and filled with lines which Burns would have loved.
Our one regret is, notwithstanding poetic quality and wit, so many of the contributions pretty literally redo the story of Tam , a lad out on the piss and the pull ignoring what Professor  Alan Riach had asked for in the original brief,
“What would Burns have written about had he been alive today? An outing to a football match in Barcelona, a blind date to Benidorm, a premarital hen party, a rave at a zombie night-club, a critical encounter with some representative characters of the psyche of contemporary Scotland, a visit to the Scottish Parliament at Question Time?”
And, OK, we have a few hen nights and a works outing.  But if Tam is about the perils of straying off the straight and narrow then there are very topical examples in the likes of Fred Goodwin trying to take on the world and Gordon Brown wanting to be Prime Minister- now both spending more time with their families.    And entries do not just have to be Scottish examples of Stray-and- Come-Uppance - what price something on Donald Trump? - nor do they have to be in broad Scots.”
There has been a huge outcry to extend the October 1 deadline and the soft- hearted judges have acquiesced.  The closing date, probably early in 2013,  will be announced shortly.
So please think big and start composing.

For details of the prizes, judges, rules and the new 2013 deadline for entries either visit Facebook below or e mailtamoshanterreboot@hjlockhart.co.uk

In other words, come up with an original and apt take on the story!! As for me, after 500+ lines, I fear I may be Burnsed out.

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