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Should.

You should get out more.

You should get out and find a man, or a woman, but preferably someone of the opposite sex.

Because you should get married by a certain age deemed appropriate by your parents, but inevitably before you are ready.

You should also have children. Soon, because it’s better to be a young mum or dad than an old mum or dad.

You should have more than one kid, but less than five because that’s just a ridiculous number.

And, if female, when you have finished giving birth, you should breast feed and devote all your attention to your child and feed them organic foods and be mindful not spiteful but also think about returning to work or not returning to work (whatever is trendy in the neighbourhood you live in) and also find time to lose that baby weight, haha! Oh you haven’t given birth yet? Or found yourself a partner?

Well you need to get out more.

Spend eight hours at work, at least five days a week, possibly more if you want to be considered worthy of respect. You should spend the rest of your free time meeting new people in social gatherings that make you nervous while drinking alcohol but (not too much) and wearing alluring yet “appropriate” attire. Don’t do online dating because stigma, but do do online dating if it’s trendy in your area, but overall basically do whatever you can to find yourself a man, or woman, but preferably someone of the opposite sex.

With the last few remaining hours of your free time you need to spend 30 minutes per day doing moderate exercise – try the gym,  you’ll meet new people! You should probably spend at least another hour a day on meal prep because healthy, organic, protein-rich and carb-free meals take time to make, and you’re probably going to ruin at least one batch crying into your saucepan because the pizza cravings are so intense. But it’s okay because you’ll feel better after a lovely eight hour sleep, right after you clean up the day’s mess, take off the make-up you have to wear (only if you’re a woman of course) have a shower, wash your hair, exfoliate, shave, moisturise, rinse, brush your teeth, floss your teeth, mouthwash your teeth, squeeze those spots you shouldn’t have and perfectly blow dry your hair.

What’s that? Only six hours before you need to be up for work? That’s okay, let’s learn to function on 4 hours sleep! You need extra time to enrich your mind: read one book a week, start learning a new language, engage in a hobby, go to an art gallery, practice some mindfulness and do some yoga. The yoga especially, it’ll help you focus on what’s really important like the amount of money you should have or the career you should always be working towards. Top tip, if you turn on the news while yoga-ing, you can multi-task and form opinions from a selection of curated options because you have to be informed, educated and on-top of the game. Speaking of, have you decided what your personal identity is yet? Because the world has all these forms in it and you just need to decide decisively NOW before the age of seventeen what’s your gender, sexual orientation, goal profession, religious view, hair colour, BMI, favourite colour and football team?

Let’s not get sidetracked, have you finished ironing, washing, bleaching, sewing, sweeping, rearranging, disinfecting, unloading, vacuuming, dusting, wiping, waxing, retiling, resurfacing and reupholstering your abode yet? Like you should? Good.

So you’ve got one whole hour of free time left, just about. And let’s face it, you need that time to worry about not being good enough. That you’re not doing enough at work, that you’ll never climb the corporate ladder high enough to secure that mortgage you need for that family you need. You need to worry that you’ll fail to find the love you must have, that you’re not the size you need to be, wearing the clothes you have to look good in. You need to worry that you’re not happy enough. Not good enough.

Not enough.

You shouldn’t be enough. You should be more than enough. You should be worthy. Of the box we want to place you in. Along with every other person of your gender, colour, age, and nationality. The box is where you should be. It should be where you want to be.

Why? What do you mean why?

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World Poetry Day: An Open Letter to the Guy at Work by Liz Ruddy

If there is one poem I’d like to share on World Poetry Day 2017, it’s this one:

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World Poetry Day: The Battle of Hastings by Marriott Edgar

Happy World Poetry Day, one and all! This year I’m posting in memory of my grandfather Harry King, and sharing one of his classic monologues by Marriott Edgar, and certainly a family favourite!

I’ll tell of the Battle of ‘Astings
As happened in days long gone by,
When Duke William became King of England
And Harold got shot in the eye.

‘Twere this way: One day in October
The Duke, who were always a toff,
And having no battles on at the moment
Had given his lads the day off.

They’d all took some boats to go fishin’
When some chap in the Conqueror’s ear,
Said: “Let’s go and put breeze up the Saxons.”
Says Bill: “By ‘eck, that’s an idea!”

Then turning around to his soldiers,
He lifted his great Norman voice
And said: “Hands up who’s coming to England.”
That was swank ‘cos they hadn’t much choice.

So they all set sail about teatime,
And the sea were so calm and so still
And at quarter to ten the next morning
They arrived at a place called Bexhill.

When Harold had seen that they’d landed,
He came up with venom and hate,
Saying :”If tha’s come for the regatta
Tha’s come here a fortnight too late.”

But William arose cool and haughty,
And said: “Give us none of your cheek.
And you’d best have your throne reupholstered,
I’ll be wanting to use it next week.”

When Harold heard this ‘ere defiance
With rage, he turned purple and blue,
And shouted so rude words in Saxon,
To which William answered: “And you!”

It were a beautiful day for a battle.
The Normans set off with a will.
And when they’d all duly assembled,
They tossed for the top of the hill.

King Harold, he won the advantage.
On the hilltop he took up his stand,
With his knaves and his lads all around him
On his horse, with his hawk in his hand.

Now the Normans had nowt in their favour.
Their chance for a victory were small
For the slope of the field were against them
And the wind in their faces, and all.

The kick-off was sharp at 2.30
And as soon as the whistle had went
Both sides started bashing each other
Till the swineherds could hear them in Kent.

The Saxons had best line of forwards,
Well armed with buckler and sword,
But the Normans had best combination
So when halftime came, neither had scored.

Then t’Duke called his cohorts together
And said: “Let’s pretend that we’re beat.
And when we get t’Saxons on level
We can cut off their means of retreat.”

So they ran and the Saxons ran after
Just exactly as William had planned
Leaving Harold alone on the hilltop
One his horse, with his hawk in his hand.

When William saw what had happened
His bow and his arrow he drew
He went straight up to Harold and shot him.
He were offside, but what could they do?

Then t’Normans turned round with a fury
And gave back both parry and thrust,
Till the battle were over, bar shouting
And you couldn’t see Saxons for dust.

And after the battle were over
There, sitting so stately and grand
Was Harold, with an eyeful of arrow
On his horse, with his hawk in his hand.

By George Marriott Edgar (1880 – 1951)

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Blog Closed for NaNoWriMo – see you in December!

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October 29, 2014 · 1:00 pm

Poetry Week – All that is gold does not glitter by J.R.R. Tolkien

Happy World Poetry Day!

It’s difficult to select a “favourite poem of all time”. Not difficult in the same way of chosing a favourite song (which is actually impossible), but difficult in a way that the question demands special attention.

You can usually tell a lot about a person from what their favourite poem is in a way that you can’t from their favourite song(s). My favourite poems are mostly ones I read during my childhood because that was the only time that I really just absorbed poetry as if I needed it to live. You can already make assumptions on my character from that, and you can make even more assumptions based on my actual favourite: All that is gold does not glitter.

Why is it my favourite? Couldn’t really tell you. It’s short, effective, and from Lord of the Rings and that’s magical as fuck so that’s probably all there is to it. Still, it’s the only poem I’ve loved so much that I wrote it out in Circular Gallifreyan to print and hang on my wall.

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Don’t give me shit about mixing the fandoms – it’s awesome and you know it.

It’s a beautiful poem, perfectly fitting to end Poetry Week. And now I invite you to share your favourite poems, and I won’t make any assumptions on your character based on your choice, promise.

All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.
From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king.

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