Harry Baker
Harry Baker

All About Harry Baker

Harry Baker has always loved words. He’s been blessed enough to travel round the world with them, winning the Poetry Slam World Cup in 2012 and currently using a maths degree as an excuse to live in Germany and find heaps more new words to play with. With two 5-star Edinburgh Fringe festival shows under his belt, his latest milestone is his 2014 book, The Sunshine Kid. 

Harry’s School Visits

Harry offers poetry performances, slam poetry workshops and slam poetry competitions. In a recent trip to Bangkok, Harry worked with three different schools over 4 days helping  the children to write their own slam poem. On the fifth day, he did a performance to all 3 schools and then went on to judge the children in a slam poetry competition.

Watch Harry perform one of his poems here: http://ted.com/talks/harry_baker_a_love_poem_for_lonely_prime_numbers?language=en

Harry’s Book

Harry Baker’s debut collection follows the narrative of his 5-Star Edinburgh Fringe shows, Harry Baker’s Super-Amazing Mega-Awesome Gap Year Adventures: Birth of a Champion and Proper Pop-Up Purple Paper People. It details the journey from performing Jay Z-Maths parodies in school competitions to representing his country in Paris and becoming the youngest ever World Poetry Slam Champion. The Sunshine Kid contains the raw honesty, tongue-in-cheek humour and blistering wordplay that have characterised his live performances and won the hearts and minds of audiences all across the globe.

To purchase Harry’s book, click here.

Samples of Harry’s Slam Poetry

59

59 wakes up on the
wrong side of his bed.
Realises all of his hair’s on
one side of his head.
Takes just a minute to work out
that it’s because of the way that he slept,
he finds some clothes and gets dressed.

He can’t help but look in the mirror
and be subtly impressed,
how he looks rough-around-the-edges
and yet casually messed,
as he glances out the window
he sees the sight that he is blessed with
of 60 from across the street.

Now 60 was beautiful.
Perfectly trimmed cuticles.
Dressed in something suitable.
Never rude or crude at all.
Unimprovable.
Right on time as usual.
More ‘on cue’ than a snooker ball
but liked to play it super-cool.

59 wanted to tell her
that he knew her favourite flower,
he thought of her every second,
every minute,
every hour.
But he knew it wouldn’t work,
he’d never get the girl,
because although she lived across the street
they came from different worlds:

While 59 admired 60’s perfectly round figure,
60 thought 59 was… odd.

One of his favourite films was
101 Dalmatians,
she – of course – preferred the sequel.
He romanticised the idea
they were star-crossed lovers,
they could overcome
the odds (and evens)
because they had each other,
she maintained the strict views
imposed on her by her mother,
that separate could not be equal.

Although at the time he felt stupid, dumb,
for trying to love a girl controlled by her stupid mum,
he should have been comforted by the simple sum:

Take 59 away from 60
and you’re left with the one.

Sure enough after two months
of moping around,
61 days later,
61 was who he found.
He had lost his keys,
and his parents were out,
so one day after school
he went round to her house.

As he noticed the slightly wonky
numbers on the door,
he wondered why he’s never
introduced himself before,
as she let him in
his jaw dropped in awe:

61 was like 60,
with a little bit more.

She has prettier eyes,
and an approachable smile,
and like him, rough-around-the-edges casual style,
and like him, everything was in disorganised piles,
and like him, her mum didn’t mind if friends stayed a while.

Because she was like him,
and he liked her.
He reckoned she would like him if she knew
he was like her.

It was different this time,
this girl was wicked,
so he plucked up the courage
and asked for her digits:

She smiled – I’m 61.
He grinned – I’m 59.
And today I’ve had a really nice time,
so tomorrow if you wanted
you could come over to mine?

She said Sure.
She loved talking to
someone just as quirky,
so she agreed to this
unofficial first date.
In the end he was only ready
one minute early,
but it didn’t matter because she arrived
one minute late.

From that moment on
there was non-stop chatter,
how they loved X Factor,
how they had two factors,
how that didn’t matter.
Distinctiveness made them better.
By the end of the night they knew
that they were meant together.

One day she was talking
about Stuck-up 60,
She noticed that 59
looked a bit shifty,
he blushed,
told her of his crush –
The best thing that never happened
because it led to us.

61 was clever see,
not prone to jealousy,
she looked him in the eyes
and told him quite tenderly:

You’re 59, I’m 61, together we
combine to become twice what 60 could ever be.

At this point 59 had
tears in his eyes,
was so glad to have this
one-of-a-kind girl in his life.
He told her the very
definition of being prime,
was that only one and himself
could his heart divide.

And she was the one
he wanted to give his heart to,
she said she felt the same and
now she knew the films were half true.
Because that wasn’t real love,
that love was just a sample,
when it came to real love,
they were a prime example.

Recommendations & Reviews

“Harry was great! The kids loved him and he inspired them to write which is exactly what he wanted. His personal story was also inspiring. It gives our students a different way of thinking about poetry and some alternative ways of thinking about their futures. Great energy, warmth – we loved him. Our only regret is that we weren’t able to have him here all week!” Tracey Marlowe – International School of Bangkok

To Make a Booking

To make an enquiry about Harry, or any of the other authors, poets & illustrators listed on this website, please phone Trevor Wilson on +44 (0) 1535 656015, or email him at trevor@caboodlebooks.co.uk