Video Poems

Click on any title below to watch a video performance:

* Macduff
* Osric
* Citizen (Julius Caesar)
* Clown (Antony & Cleopatra)
* After the Play (Peter Quince)
* A Refusal to Mourn the Death
of a Child
* Through a Glass Darkly

3 Copyright Free Christmas Sonnets

Through a Glass Darkly:
this triptych of Nativity sonnets can be performed, broadcast or printed by anyone without breach of copyright. The text of these 3 sonnets can be found here. All other poems on this site and in In Small Measure remain the copyright of Christopher Whitby. Permission to print, perform, broadcast or otherwise use any of them can be obtained by emailing

Christopher Whitby biography

Following the publication of In Small Measure (May 2011 – see Open Poetry at, this site has changed. Rather than a broad selection of sonnets and other poems, one of 8 poems will be randomly selected for display each time this page is loaded. Over time, the stock of 8 poems used in this selection will also be changed.

Much of my poetry is intended for oral delivery and acting, as well as for reading and some video performances are available by clicking on the links in the right-hand column.

Party Frock

‘Give us a twirl,’ I said and so she did
(thus marking out some territory – men
don’t do twirls). Weaving straps and flounce she hid
herself behind the conjured image, then
with new-spun adult confidence enquired:
‘You think?’ ‘You’ll slay them all,’ I said, not sure
if that was quite the answer she required
but sensing needs not prominent before.

Oh take it off! Put on your jeans again.
Let me be Mr Grumpkin still. In such
small acts I feel you slipping through the cup
my hands once made for you and hate it when
you bring me face to face with just how much
I want-admire-resent your growing up.