Charles Bukowski’s The Laughing Heart

Charles Bukowski's Laughing Heart

This is a favourite poem of mine at the moment, especially the last line.

The Laughing Heart by Charles Bukowski

Your life is your life

Don’t let it be clubbed into dank submission.

Be on the watch.

There are ways out.

There is a light somewhere.

It may not be much light but

It beats the darkness.

Be on the watch.

The gods will offer you chances.

Know them.

Take them.

You can’t beat death but

You can beat death in life, sometimes.

And the more often you learn to do it,

The more light there will be.

Your life is your life.

Know it while you have it.

You are marvellous

The gods wait to delight

In you.

What else is going on…

— This week’s How to Own the Room podcast — out today —is about all things NERVES AND CONFIDENCE!   As I explain, there’s a link between the two. You don’t have to eradicate nerves to be confident. And enhanced confidence can withstand the worst jitters. One of the main reasons I started this podcast was to push this message, which I learned over the course ten years in stand-up comedy: nerves are normal and unavoidable — and they are not to be feared. To focus on them, obsess over them or attempt to eradicate them is a perilous red herring when it comes to performance. No-one cares about your nerves. They came to get whatever you’ve got to give them: so concentrate on giving them that thing. Great advice this week from Nigella Lawson, Margaret Heffernan, Cerys Mathews and the extraordinarily calm and collected Karen Arthur, leader of The Kingdom Choir (who sang at Meghan and Harry’s wedding). There’s also a sneak preview in this episode of some of the ideas in my new book Happy High Status: How to Be Effortlessly Confident (out June), namely about what I call “non-problems.” This is the phenomenon of diagnosing yourself with all kinds of insecurities and hang-ups which have no basis in reality. I have witnessed this phenomenon in myself and in thousands of other women (and men, but mostly women). It’s one of the biggest barriers to confidence and it’s completely in our heads. More on all this in the coming months.

— You can come and see me on the road at these events… Lucy Porter tour support in Farnham on 31 March and in Taunton on 1 April and in Epsom on 14 April… Interviewing Killing Eve author Luke Jennings in London E7 on 27 April… Hosting three French authors presenting new translations of their work at the French Institute, London on 16 May (one for the diary, tickets live soon)… Hosting comedian Fern Brady, author of Strong Female Character, at Bath Festival 21 May… Hosting an exciting Agatha Christie/Miss Marple afternoon tea at Bath Festival also 21 May… 

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