Kate Stone

Kate Stone

Poetry’s a Funny Thing

Hollie McNish is a funny lady, and I’m not sure if she even knows it?

Poetry is deep, meaningful and powerful and normally a world away from anything comedic, I once thought.

Over the past seven to eight years I’ve enjoyed the urban poetry/spoken word scene more than I ever imagined I could as I think back to the dreaded English classes at high school. Bored out of my tiny mind studying Dylan Thomas and her poems about milk in the woods or something? But soon as I saw and heard the likes of Kate Tempest and Scroobius Pip, my hip hop alter ego related to the genre like a wannabe does to a Spice Girl.

While watching spoken word acts you may smile, snigger or giggle slightly from time to time, but with Hollie I was actually whole-heartedly laughing out loud, and so were the rest of the crowd. The group of friends I was with all said, “She could do stand up comedy”

Don’t get me wrong, Hollie’s poetry is deep, meaningful and extremely powerful too, especially her ode to breastfeeding. But her honest and open outlook on the many strange realities of life makes her warm, relatable and, well, funny.

If you’ve seen her YouTube videos, she can come across quite hard faced, a no nonsense serious and creative soul. She’s got points to make and she’s making them. Though in essence this is true of her work, in the flesh, she is instantly likeable with a soft, cute and very naturally funny nature.

This particularly shone through as she reminisced about writing a poem with her Nan inspired by the hip hop artist Flo Rider and his song (Blow My) Whistle. Which apparently is some kind of hidden message to women on how best to please the dude. Hollie had the crowd in stitches as she slammed his choice of metaphor, a whistle? The tiniest of instruments, that takes no skill to play. The audience agreed with laughter, she has a good point!

Her one liners between her readings are an honest insight to her feelings and she isn’t afraid to laugh at herself as she goes over old memoirs about being pregnant, having leaky nipples and wanting to beat the midwife up when she announces she is okay to have sex once again.

Being naturally funny is a talent too; Hollie is definitely in my opinion, a funny woman.

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