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0034 Poem With Which To Start A Poetry Reading

Rating: 2.8

Ladies and Gentlemen,
this is my first poetry reading
and I’m very nervous
and nearly cancelled tonight

but I spoke about this to
a friend who’s a therapist
and he said,
this is what you do,

you imagine the audience
in front of you
all in their underwear
(as you probably are; but
without the outer layer)
with the men
wearing the most idiotic
flowered Hawaiian
two sizes too large
boxer shorts
and the ladies
in the frumpiest
you can imagine

apparently it works

so if I look at you, ladies and gentlemen,
somewhat strangely
from time to time
or giggle uncontrollably
or my eyes rest on you personally
as if we’re sharing some huge
x-ray joke,

please forgive me
and understand
that’s it for your benefit
as well as mine
and that you will have put your outerwear
back on
in the interval
before the next poem

I hope this is OK with you
and nobody’s too embarrassed
in fact you could do the same trick
with me if it’s
any help
and now
I think I’ve said enough as
I’m OK now
how about you?

(For maximum effect, pause noticeably at the end of each line)

(with thanks to Ernestine for the idea)


M, absolutely hilarious, and it flows in a manner perfectly appropriate for commencing a poetry reading. (Not that this is a recommendation....) In the same way that one should always when unnerved in an interview situation imagine the interviewers on the lavatory. Superb, Michael - I'm going to read this time and time again when I need a bellyacheing laugh. t x

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Alice Vedral Rivera 12 July 2006

A stroke of comedic and poetic genius - I've been laughing for a while now and I'll probably still be smiling as I nod off tonight. avr

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Seán O' Muiriosa 12 July 2006

LOL. Loved this! Very funny and yes quite a good idea.

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