Hand-written Poems“Good poetry in general actually is there to help people get through bad stuff.”  

As heard on arena

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Stuck for gift ideas for the poetry lover in your life? Poet, writer and teacher Dave Lordan might have the answer to your prayers. Dave appeared on Monday’s Arena, and told Seán Rocks that, for a modest sum, he’ll hand write one of his poems, as well as a personal note to the recipient, and send it off in the post for you. Seán wondered where the idea for the unusual gift service came from:

“I’ve been around a while now and I have a few poems – especially short poems – that are kind of popular with people. And I do a lot of live gigging, but I’m not great at selling books and things like this, but people are always asking me, you know, where can I get your poems? Where can I get your poems? Where can I get your poems? And I just thought it’d be a nice idea.”

A lot of people relate to his poems, Dave said. And the hand-written poem is only part of the gift package: there’s also a hand-written note, personalised to the recipient, based on information from the person buying the gift. So you get two pieces of original writing in one unique package. And, Dave told Seán, people find his poems consoling.

“I’m an old-style poet. I write poems that are like songs or ballads or stories, or things like that. And a lot of ordinary people relate to that.”

What about the visual appeal of the written poem – has Dave got beautiful writing? No, is the short answer, apparently:

“I’m not a calligraphic artist…. It’s readable, but I wouldn’t claim it to be beautiful.”

Readable is good, though, right? And every hand-written poem is unique. Dave has picked ten of his poems which he describes as being “popular with ordinary people”. The list consists not only of poems that everyone can relate to, but also poems that are short enough to fit on one page.

“My idea is that people will frame them and put them up and things like that.”

The poetry lover in your life (which may indeed be you) might be about to have a very good Christmas indeed.

To choose your poem, go to Dave Lordan Creativity on Facebook. And you can hear the full discussion with Dave, and listen back to the rest of Arena here:

© The Listener 2017

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