Just Another Joe

a hard name's gonna fall

Just Another Joe

Poor little child, for now comes the naming,
The blanding and saming,
The cautious conforming,
The def’nitely not standing out from the norming.
But, loving parents, just look to your child,
For whatever’s chosen is hereafter filed –
For eighteen years onwards they cannot correct,
So only with courage and passion select.

For do we so need yet another Amanda ?
Or Johnny or Sandra ?
Or Alan or Gary ?
And are we deficient in Tom, Dick or Harry ?
So please do not foist them with Julie or Sam,
Nor Timmy, nor Mary, nor Philip, nor Pam.
For Cathy and Bill are as common as Claire
While Helens and Davids are found everywhere.

Now these names aren’t bad, they are just overused,
Their power diffused.
While others, no fairer,
Must serve in a purpose beyond their poor barer –
To label a kid with your own precious name
Is vanity foremost, to make them the same,
To moniker sprogs just to honour the dead
Is dubious burden to thrust in their head.

Yet some names stand out from the Susan and Ron –
Like Homer or Marlon,
Like Kingsley or Rudyard,
Like Heathcliff, or Linford, or else Isambard.
So Brooke and Keanu and Kelsey and Storm
Can ease off some pressure from Amy and Norm.
Give each of us fewer with whom we need share –
A little less common, a little more rare.

One of my first attempts to document my fascination with names, and also an early foray into my habit of versifyig a checklist.  I note that all of the examples in the final stanza call to mind a particular individual, which I’m sure I intended, but which I now think would be just as unfortunate on the poor kids as calling them Alfie or Sophie.

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