In 2002 I started my history degree at Bath Spa University. I wasn’t aware of it at the time but in the first year they like you to pick a second subject. At first I didn’t want to and wondered if I could get out of it because I thought there was nothing else I wanted to study. Then I realised that they did Creative Writing so I chose that. One of my teachers on the course was a poet called Tim Liardet who as well as being a great poet is also a really nice man. I took one of his courses and he gave me 70% for it!
One of the exercises he set us was to think of all the preconceptions we have about poetry and poets and write a poem embracing all of them. This poem was the result.
In Order to be a Poet…..
You don’t have to be high brow, low brow or a cow.
You don’t have to be mad, bad or sad.
You don’t have to have a PHD, a GCSE or be an S.O.B.
You don’t have to be well read, well bred or dead.
Don’t have to be Greek, a geek or a freak.
Don’t need to be hairy, scary or a fairy.
Don’t need to be medicated, alienated or inebriated.
Don’t need to be poor, a whore or insecure.
Don’t need a Rolls-Royce, or to be James Joyce, just need your own voice.