Courage brings her to the stage,
facing a cynical crowd in action,

sneers and jeers, barely hidden
by those so quick to judge.

Words from the dying, anguished
impoverished Fantine, fill the hall,

(Les Miserable’s I Dreamed a Dream
this selection amuses the sceptical).

Beginning low and rising, softness
and strength, a voice of honey treacle

filling the void, thrilling the ears,
sticking it to the mocking fools

who can’t see past the appearance,
plain and simple.

But the power in her vocals
and the history in her heart,

capture and carry the people
all the way to the finale, tear-filled

and tremulous, foundations shifting,
a bin full of misplaced judgements.

The rebuke is made, the faces red,
the victory for talent and everywoman,

assessed by weight for age, makeup
and looks, as done for horses.

The audience stands for the ovation.
A wake-up is calling.


The poem is written about Susan Boyle’s performance on Britain’s Got Talent 2009. Nigel Featherstone did a blog post recently about the video. I hadn’t seen the performance (though I knew about Boyle) – so thanks Nigel 🙂 . It is a must see video.