helping to develop speaking and leadership skills 
Wokingham Speakers Club


A poem by our new President 
Mell Sheppard 
10th July 2015 
It almost does not seem possible that we are going into our 3rd chartered year. To mark the occasion, I have written this little poem. 
"Late one evening nearly three years ago 
I was stopped in my tracks, by a woman I know. 
She spoke of this club, her vision, her dream, 
That would serve the community, a public speaking scheme. 

It sounded like fun, but a lot of hard graft, 
And I’m actually quite lazy, so I think I just laughed, 
But giving me her usual persuasive propaganda, 
I ended up agreeing or rather, giving into Amanda. 
Now along with Amanda came this other lad, 
In fact I call them my Toastmasters Mum and Dad, 
Because they argue a lot and sometimes he gives her some stick, 
But we wouldn’t change him, you’ve gotta love Steve Catchick! 
Steve had this friend called Jo, I think they met whilst out dancing, 
And Jo decided to give it a go and wow are her speeches advancing, 
She’s Sarjeant at Arms now, she took over from a Latino Diva, 
And I wish she’d come back to the Club, because we all really miss Catalina. 
Now TableTopics is a tricky thing, probably the hardest task of all, 
And I’ve never seen someone with such artistry, learn to stall, like Paul, 
He detracts and deflects til he gets to the amber, 
Then runs for the hills, you could say he’s a professional rambler! 
Then again, is there anyone whose Topics you truly admire? 
Perhaps John or Asha, or maybe Christina MacGuire? 
I will never think of Aristotle in the same way again, 
I still have panic attacks and have to breathe deeply for ten. 
If I’d understood the question, I would have been ok, 
But it was all Greek to me… anyway, 
That was a bad joke, I hope you’ll let me off it, 
I’m getting almost as bad as Brian Moffatt, 
But at least we English get to speak in our native tongue, 
For some of our foreign members it can’t be much fun, 
Cherif, Sunil , Nadir and Sandra too, 
Answering questions when they don’t have a bloody clue. 
I take my hat off to them, I think they’re really brave 
And what a shame it is, we don’t have a member called Dave. 
We have a David, but that’s not quite the same, 
And as Shakespeare once asked, “What’s in a name?” 
The most exotic of our tribe, surely being Margahrita, 
Jose-Maria’s a close second, but I don’t think he beats her. 
Her husband’s quite funny, have you met Thomas White? 
He’s a software engineer by day and a flasher by night! 
Photographrapher that is, in case of any doubt, 
Sorry Mum, please don’t walk out. 
I want you to see the Tall Tales Contest, 
Where we get to watch the best of the best 
Who’s your money on? It’s a tough one to call, 
Therese or Ian, or maybe the holder, Paul? 
Well to all the contestants, I wish you the best of luck 
Who knows, maybe this will help your cause towards The Fat Duck? 
I said duck Graeme, you can relax now, 
Although it could have been a horse, a sheep, or a cow. 
If you don’t get these in jokes, there’s no cause for alarm, 
All you need to know, is that Graeme has a fetish for the farm! 
I’d like to say a word about our new members too, 
I’m so happy they’ve joined us, right out of the blue, 
So let’s welcome Beverley, Daniel, Padma and Alice 
And winning the ribbon with his IceBreaker, that legend, Chris. 
Now there are a couple of people I’m happy to see back here, 
Tsitsi Madzinigra (try saying that after a beer) 
And keeping a watchful eye, to ensure everyone gets a fair hearing, 
We have in our ranks, that old codger, Richard Shearing. 
But there’s one person who’s missing, who always enjoys this farce, 
I’m talking of course, about our beloved Marce, 
I wasn’t sure whether to rhyme with Marce or Collucci, 
But then realised I’d be screwed as my only option would be Gucci, 
And how do you start to wrap up from there? 
I need some help from a lady with imagination and flare, 
Deborah, how am I going to get myself out of this mess? 
By the way, that’s a really nice dress. 
Well, how about this, Join us after in the bar for some wine or a Wimbledon Pimms, 
Apparently the bar tab is being sponsored by Andrew Simms, 
At least that’s what I’d heard he’d previously told’em, 
And I’m looking forward to getting pissed with Rachel from Oldham. 
All that’s left to say is I hope I can serve you well, 
And that is a wrap, love your President, Mell."