The DO Lectures

No drugs were involved.
But my brain and heart have been rewired permanently.

They say that if you go to The DO Lectures – #dowales2022 – you come back changed.

I can vouch for that.

On Saturday afternoon I went to a poetry workshop with Emrys Plant.
A lot went in. Nothing came out.

Until 18 hours later.

I woke up on Sunday morning and wanted to say something. I started a draft of a LinkedIn post.

But instead, I wrote a poem. Anyone who knows me would confirm that this is not a normal thing for me to do.

And yet it was inevitable that the fizzing soup of ideas and emotions that had been brewed up over 3 days was going to come out somehow.

Here it is:


200 faces look towards one face. We are moving and moved.

The names attached to those faces shimmer and blur in our minds.

We learned them from fireside chats and genderless toilet queues, repeated silently to ourselves to mark them. Spoken back by us warmly as we try to score them deeper, make introductions to others, build on their points, hug later in the whisky bar.

But names are slippery evaporative things that slowly fade when the tide comes in,
written on the etch-a-sketch of minds wiped clean every hour by fresh surges of joy and tears

I am touched.

Feelings released from British prisons of reserve and self-defense run wild and cross unseen boundaries forgetful of the codes that built them, then and now

Minds have met. Hearts in contact. We’ve looked into the eyes, soul windows open.

Ships move past each other in the night, and stop, our crews on deck, waving.
Small boats to and fro.
Whose ship and whose deck?

We connect. Neurones and networks. We link in.

A ray of sunlight brews sugars, the exchange rate of the network. We feed the roots.

We can’t do this alone. We invite other lives to inhabit us, brew, ferment and transform

Our lungs trade carbon. Breathe it out and hold it, breathless for an age, fingertips sparkling with electricity.

Fear rises but we hold the key. We overwrite past habits, and float past the icebergs, laughing.

And when our cup is full, it brims over
But all that spills is not lost – a rich liquor leaches fine sediments to enrich our soil

Hope just needs a space to grow.


I am leaving this here. I might delete it later, as it is quite personal, but for now it sums up how I feel, 48 hours after The DO Lectures finished.

If you are looking for inspiration about what do do next, or for the help, support and direction you need to help you do what you already know what you want to do, sign up for DO Wales 2023. It might be the best decision you ever made.

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