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Naming Ceremonies

What is in a Name?

It has been a marvellous summer in Hampshire.  We have had beautiful, balmy days and there have been some glorious Naming Ceremonies.

I have been able to work with families who have had a new baby and wanted to create a truly personal celebration of the arrival of that joyous little bundle into their lives.

I have also been immensely impressed by a young man who, at the age of 7, was able to join his Mother and Step-Father in a new family with a whole fresh start to his life.  The ceremony was pocket sized, very few honoured guests and although there was an underlying sadness of what had been lost; I thought that this young man made everyone feel very hopeful and positive for him and that is quite something for someone so young.

I wrote this poem for a Mother and her Daughter in advance of her naming day.  Her celebration will be in the early New Year.  I can't wait to find out what she will be called.

What is in a Name?

I will look at you and our eyes will meet,

recognition will spark and fizz between us.

You are as precious to me as the tiniest grain of gold.

I see our paths twisting together like strands of silk.

How do I name that depth of love?

What can I say that will show the world what you mean to me?

Can I name you for someone who has gone before;

that was their name and their place in my heart.

The tenderness I feel for you is new.

Freshly minted and unique.

Should your name be grand?                                              

Will your name be used by all who know you,

or will you be chosen for a special name, a pet name,

a name that is only yours, your sobriquet.

You are unknown to us yet.

Will you be brave and strong or quiet and homely?

Will you rage against the world or skip sweetly through?

Should your name mark a place, a time, a moment?

Should you wear the badge of history or a well loved tale?

For now I will call you by a private name.

A name that is ours in the dark of the night.

A name that thumps and bumps as you do in my womb.

I will  whisper your name as I sing to you.

I will murmur your name as I stroke you, safe inside.

Your name is unknown to me yet,

it will come in a rush as you will.

A name that will mark you out as who you are.

A name that fits you like the softest shawl,

tucked around you, your name and your's alone.


  1. I love the poem, it really reminded me of the first feelings of love I had towards my unborn child and the importance of choosing your child's name.


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