Turner Sims Birthday Poems

To help us celebrate our 46th birthday on Thursday 19 November 2020, we asked you to send us your birthday wishes – and you responded magnificently! Here’s a couple of our favourites…


By Godfrey Brandt

A beacon in the sky
A star in the night
Something to behold
Let the truth be told
You make the wrong right!

I have enjoyed your music
(I remember JJ)
I’m afraid I can’t remember the exact score
but the occasion was sick!
And that means good

If I could find another word I would
Use it – but why?
In modern terms that sums it up.
Like no other term could.

At the Turner I met my only musical hero
Hugh Masakela , who played a menu of music for our delight
And he sang! He sang!

He mentioned his meeting with Louis Armstrong in New York
It was Louis that said to him inter alia: SING!
You,like I, hold him responsible for your singing
Wonderful insight – He Was right!
He also helped you define township Jazz which he articulated effectively in monosyllables

As I think about the gigs I attended at the Turner Sims
A lot of Jazz appears but not only!
I attended a lot of other events: classical , folk, Black History and educational gigs including the Recorder Extravaganza.

One of your enduring strengths , is the ability to bring together
The Musics of the world :together – under one sky -your piece of sky
And that was also the bringing together of people because we matter!
Thanks for sharing your piece of sky!
Music matters


By Sue Goldsmith, Optimistic Poet

I like to go to live events
In the concert hall
Hearing the performers
Giving it their all.

But Covid closed up Turner Sims.
The lockdown shut us in
We could only go outside
For food or medicine.

So Turner Sims beguiled us
With interviews and blogs.
Playlists of their favourite things
And tales of cats and dogs.
( and hamsters, goldfish, greater crested newts etc…)

The end of Covid is not nigh,
The tunnel remains dark.
But things are starting to return,
There’s just a little spark!

Musicians play 6 feet apart,
They’re not allowed to roam.
We buy our virtual tickets
And enjoy the show at home.

It seems so strange that at the end
No loud applause now greets
Musicians as they take a bow –
There are no bums on seats…

But hopefully the day will come,
It will be really cool,
When COVID has receded
And all the seats are full.