Piece Sources for Verbatim

Published on Sunday, September 20, 2009 in , , , , ,

Sir Alan Bates(UPDATE - July 14, 2011: Verbatim has been updated and improved. Click here to learn about the update!)

If you've found Verbatim useful, you're probably wondering where you can find more resources.

The first place you should look, of course, is Verbatim's own related resources section in the manual. There, you'll find many sources for speeches, monologues, poems, and more! As a matter of fact, one of the sources you'll find there is this very blog entry.

Before I provide a few more resources, I'd like to explain a little about where the idea of Verbatim came from. Not long after I hit upon my idea of the Memory Binder, which I first discussed back in November 2008, I hit upon the idea of using it to hold poems. I didn't discuss the memorization of poems until this past April, but I had been working with it since December 2008.

I enjoyed memorizing poems so much, especially with the help of the approach taught in J. J. Hayes article, I decided my New Year's resolution would be to memorize at least 1 poem per month, so that at the end of the year, I would have 12 poems memorized. I'm actually ahead of schedule, as I have the 11 poems I included in the sample poems.xml file already memorized (Which is why those were chosen in the first place)!

Since poetry was the original inspiration, that's where I've focused my efforts when looking for new pieces to memorize.

Most of the resources in Verbatim's manual are text-based, so that it's easy to copy and paste when setting up the XML file. However, I've found video to also be a valuable resource in finding new pieces. I've put together several YouTube playlists containing various poem videos. Sure, you can't copy and paste the text, but most them are either easy enough to understand, or are classic enough that they're easily found in text version on the web.

Here are the playlists I've put together in the hopes that it will help you discover some new poems which you might like to learn. None are in any particular order, so you may wish to randomize the playlist order (click here to learn how to do that) to make the discovery process more interesting:

Classics - This is a small list of classics I created as I discovered new pieces. While there aren't many in this list, these videos are extraordinary in their depiction of their respective poems.

UBS Ads - I first talked about this series of ads back in May. To project an image of strength and stability, UBS presented several respected actors reciting classic pieces of poetry.

Miscellaneous - Too often, lists of classic poems make poetry seem stuffy. The pieces on this list are more recent, and may be easier to relate to for many audiences. It also may surprise you as to just where poetry can pop up. Even sitcoms like Night Court and The Brady Bunch have featured poetry!

Nipsey Russell - It's hard to mention humorous poems and TV without referencing television's poet laureate, so much so that he really deserves his own playlist. If you're not familiar with his work, you soon will be.

Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats - This classic book by T.S. Eliot features poems that weren't hard to find on video, as it was the inspiration for the musical CATS.

Best Remembered Poems - This list is full of poems from a book of the same name by Grey Matter's perennial favorite, Martin Gardner, which focuses on poems that are the best remembered by ordinary American who like poetry. These range from classic children's poems, such as Antigonish up to classic pieces by Wordsworth and Longfellow. If you enjoy these works, check out the sequel Famous Poems from Bygone Days

Do you have any sources you've found helpful in discovering new pieces? I'd love to hear about them.

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