I’ve never particularly liked Carol Ann Duffy’s work, finding it exceedingly banal, lacking in skill and technique, and often disconcertingly amateurish. I say amateurish with particular pointedness considering she has recently been appointed Poet Laureate.
But now it appears she is plumbing new depths of absurdity with her Beckham-inspired poem “Achilles.” Oh look! Beckham injured his Achilles tendon! I know – let’s equate that with the Greek myth because the Achilles tendon and the mythological figure Achilles… wow they’re linked! That’s never been done before! I could get over the mind-numbing simplicity of such a link were it not for clumsy, ugly lines like “And it was sport, not war, his charmed foot on the ball.”
Given that Beckham’s injury only took place two days ago, it’s evident that this was a quick affair. But maybe the Poet Laureate ought to have spent a few more hours on polishing up this particular turd.