Andrew Forster's Poetry
Support for studying English GCSE and A Level
Andrew Forster - Biography
Andrew Forster was born in South Yorkshire, England. He is a poet and essayist. Forster was awarded Scottish Arts Council writer's bursaries in 1998 and 2002.
Forster lived in Scotland for twenty-one years and then moved to Cumbria (North of England) in 2008. He declares that “It’s very difficult to make a living from poetry… I’m a professional Literature Officer, currently working with the Wordsworth Trust, in Grasmere in the Lake District. I organise literature events and festivals and look at ways to support writers. This allows me to make a living in the literary world.”
Forster comments on his poetic influences: “I regularly return to poets like Ted Hughes, Elizabeth Bishop, Simon Armitage and, increasingly, Seamus Heaney, and think that their influence is visible in my poems.”
Two of Forster’s poems (Brothers and Horse Whisperer) appeared in the AQA English Literature GCSE The Moon on the Tides anthology. Many students have studied his work for GCSE English Literature.
Andrew Forster - 'Brothers' - Annotation
Annotation prompts for Andrew Forster’s ‘Brothers’.
Brothers is written in the past tense, looking back on a childhood experience. The poem has an autobiographical and nostalgic feel. Andrew Forster was born in South Yorkshire and lived in Scotland for 20 years before moving to Cumbria in 2008.
Forster states: “The poem ‘Brothers’ is one of a number of poems based on childhood memories that appear in my first book ‘Fear of Thunder’ (2007). The story behind ‘Brothers’ was an incident where I had behaved very cruelly to my younger brother.” Is the poem apologetic? How sincere (heartfelt) is it?
The annotation prompts are a supportive tool, intended to encourage further poetry analysis and interpretation.