in the dark

It’s said that glossophobia – the fear of speaking in public – is high up among the most common fears, so I’m slightly surprised that it’s not something that has ever particularly bothered me.

Perhaps I read the lesson in church as a child or at the school carol service often enough for it to cease to be really frightening, although that raises the question of why, as a very timid small child, I was willing to volunteer to read – especially as I remember on at least one occasion having to stand up to a terrifying schoolmaster in order to be allowed to audition for the carol service: he thought I would never make myself heard – though I proved him wrong.
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worrying about stress

Some time ago I read one of those ‘motivational quotes’ to the effect that you shouldn’t laugh at someone who pronounces a word wrongly, as the chances are it means they learned it through reading, rather than hearing it spoken, and no one should be mocked for trying to better themselves.

It’s true that I am still likely to laugh when I hear an American say someone made a “fox paw” when they mean a faux pas but, essentially, I think there is a lot of truth in the sentiment.
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thoughts of home

I’ve already mentioned here that I was invited to take part in TEDx Leamington Spa last November, not as a speaker, but as a performer. There were just over a dozen speakers, and several other performers, each with their own take on the theme of “home”.

Before the event, I attended meet-ups and rehearsals and scribbled notes about all the different presentations, trying to make sense of a huge and very daunting task. During this time, I produced a couple of poems – including “fade to blue” and “information overload“, which can be read by clicking through to earlier blog posts – that I didn’t use on the day.
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love again

Once more, I am choosing poems to read at an event.

It’s a themed event and the theme is “love”, so, once more, I am choosing love poems to read at an event.

And, once more, I am pondering the idea that “all poetry is love poetry”.

The difficulty in choosing what to read is not that I don’t have any love poetry in my files; it’s more that I have far too much of the stuff and a very limited time slot at the event tomorrow.
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spoiled for choice

Once more, I am selecting a set of poems to read at an upcoming event. once more, the organiser wants to know in advance what to expect. Once more, I am dithering over making a decision.

When I was first invited to read, I leapt at the chance and didn’t give a moment’s thought to whether I would find something suitable. But there is a theme: the pieces should be humorous. And humour is a very subjective matter.

So I’ve been leafing through papers and notebooks, scrolling through documents, and re-visiting lots of old poems to see what I can find. Although very little of it is laugh-out-loud funny, the more I look, the more pieces I find that might be suitable.
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