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June 2001

Nomination: Afternoons [September ? 1959. From The Whitsun Weddings]

‘Afternoons’ in some ways is a time capsule since in the poem Larkin observes such things as mothers “setting free” their children at swing and sandpit, a scene that is now perhaps dying out since in today’s world young mothers tend to go into the workplace rather than spend time with their children.

[The] poem reminds me about a cinema in my town’s centre that closed down about a year ago and hasn’t been touched, though when you look inside it’s like looking into the past, seeing all the films from a year ago and all the fashion photos.

Jonathan Winn

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