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Remembering the Days of Youth and University Hijinks With Poetry

The golden moments of childhood and adolescence shouldn't fade from one's memories, they should be celebrated. The most outrageous ones that make great stories can even be shared to the delight of audiences everywhere. That's what singer and songwriter Emily Nash does with her collection of rhymes and verses: "One for the Road."

Nash's university days were full of adventures, perfect material for her lyrical career. Verses are key to both songwriting and poetry, so she weaved these lyrics portraying the adventures she and her friends had during their wildest years. "One for the Road" collects these and accompanies them with charming illustrations to enrich her reflection of the precious years of youth.

Full of good-natured humor that makes it suitable for children as well as young adults, "One for the Road" offers relatable snapshots of life from various points, ranging from childhood holidays and trips to the beach to the academic hardships of the university.

"I wanted to compile the poems I had written during university years as I felt they would be fun to share and make you laugh at some of them I hope. They are easy to understand with regular rhythm and rhyme, appropriate to read to children and to enjoy as an adult reflecting on your own life yourself." Nash says.

Nash shows the importance of pet ownership (and the hazards of irresponsible pet ownership) in "The dogs and the guinea pigs." In "Sea giant," she recounts holidays in Cornwall when her young imagination visualized incredible things beneath the enormous sea before her. An excerpt from it reads:

"So gently lapped the waves upon the giant’s edge,

So tenderly upon her toes as if her it did acknowledge.

Indeed each wave was like a sigh from something old and wise

who’d seen the sins of all mankind and watched them die like flies.

And through it all from age to age lived on same routine,

Feeding fish and whale and ray while keeping sands all clean."

University's challenges, and the anxieties and frustrations they bring with them, are depicted in "Geeky indecision," which shows how Nash switched from one course to another as she found many subjects interesting while being simultaneously uncertain of which path to take. In a way, this captures a quintessential facet of life - there's so much to do, there are so many interesting things to experience, but one is never sure where one's heading. Nash also shows the difficulty of meeting parental expectations. It's not just all about classes and courses though, in "Night Out," Nash portrays the clubbing scene in Nottingham and the exhilaration of ruling the dance floor.

She also shows her battle with eating disorders in "Adulterous addiction," a meditation on the nature of greed. Nash views this as an offense to god, and in her poem, she compares the condition to a wife who is cheating on her husband with food. An excerpt from it reads:

"My wife has a weakness for palate,

for sweet things she overly cares,

sometimes I think she would rather

be married to a chocolate éclair,

or a giant sweet toffee apple,

or a silky smooth galaxy bar,

or a big bag of popcorn,

or a wrapped chocolate assortment jar."

In "Origami friend," Nash shows that pursuing passions and hobbies can be more than just enjoyable pastimes and can have a deeper meaning. To do this, she depicts God creating humans with the art of origami rather than by molding clay.

The pages of "One for the Road" show sketches of memorable places in Nash's town, such as the local church and pubs. It is an illustrated lyrical journey that entertains while providing life lessons and food for thought.

About the Author

Emily Nash is a singer and songwriter from Guildford, U.K. She plays guitar, piano, and the flute and writes mainly worship music that invokes the natural world. She is also an avid writer of poems. She also enjoys making hats and headbands using decorative fabrics and, over the lockdown, tried creating face masks as well.

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