Geography: Will You Marry Me?

“Inspiring Geography Stories” is a project created for the 2019 Geographical Association Annual Conference (#GAConf19) theme of ‘Celebrating Geography’. This post gives you the full lyrics, video and performance of the “Geography: Will You Marry Me?” poem – the piece of creative writing I wrote by combining and condensing the six #InspiringGeogStories. It was performed at the GAConf19 TeachMeet, and you can see the video below.

Geography: Will You Marry Me?

Take my hand and walk with me
Because I have something to say, something to confess
You are my life, my world, my inspiration
No matter the landscape, you allow me to express
My love for you
Like Attenborough you have the charming ‘voice of god’
Like Rosling you use fact and reality to keep me sane
Like Dian Fossey you’re courageous, brave and saintly
Geography: will you marry me?

Geography you instil awe, wonder, belief and hope
You keep us motivated to learn, to teach for decades and beyond
Whether it’s north-west London or the African plains
You connect us, and the world easily corresponds

You inspire youth, you regenerate the old
You’re a problem solver, an open-thinker, a memory-maker
I want to preach your complex beauty
Geography: will you marry me?

I will travel to the ends of the Earth for you
And yet, you carry me through life even when I put it on hold
I’ve seen mountains, oceans, concrete jungles through your eyes
You’ve shown me how desert valleys can turn green
A sight to behold

When human and physical elements coexist your true beauty shines
You help me understand that with symbiosis we are truly alive
We can achieve
The sound of howling wolves sing me to sleep and in my dreams,
again, you make me believe

And you helped me find myself; showed me who I truly am
Showed me cultures and places which love and accept me
By the Bay, under the golden bridge; beyond the binary
Geography: you are the champion of inclusivity and diversity
Will you marry me?

Geography you gave me a calling and a purpose
You gave me strength and resilience
Through biodiversity, wilderness and conservation
And then illness struck me…
My body began to give in and my mind was surely to follow

But Geography, I let you back in and I took a deep breath
And listened to the old brag of my heart: I am, I am, I am
I inch outside into the countryside and its air washes over me
Where my chair cannot take me and my boots stay cold and bare
You lift and carry me and I again can start to feel free

Geography, please never leave
Will you marry me?

At the GA conference I delivered a lecture which told some of the stories that made up the poem above.

Read the stories behind the blue lyrics in Part 1 of the ‘Inspiring Geography Stories’ series of blog entries.

Read the stories behind the green lyrics in Part 2 of the series of blog entries.


GAConf19 TeachMeet performance


Thanks to Richard Allaway for streaming the TeachMeet event live. This is a snippet showing my bit, but the whole TeachMeet is well worth the watch and you can find it on Richard’s “Geography All The Way” Facebook page here.

The video (no voice-over/lyrics)


Over the next few days I’ll re-record the voice-over and add it to the poem’s video to go up on YouTube. Stay tuned 🙂

Don’t forget you can follow this blog, and also keep updated by following Geogramblings on Twitter and on Facebook!


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