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This category will contain audio resources for learning English.

Here you can listen to native English speakers using everyday words and phrases in English as a teaching tool.

Song of the Years – Dave Dobbyn

Here’s another song, this one from the prominent New Zealand singer and songwriter Dave Dobbyn.

This is Dobbyn’s brilliant version of a poem by another great New Zealander, James K. Baxter .

The powerful auto-biographical song touches on two themes Baxter returned to over and again – Catholicism, and alcoholism.

Have a listen, read along in your own language, and enjoy!

When from my mother’s womb I came
Disputandum was my name.

Weeping hoping threatening
Beyond myself I had no king.

I drew in with each hour’s breath
The grey dust of the second death.

When my childhood days were spent
To Venus I grew suppliant.

Little tremors woke and died
Within the mountain of my pride.

Singing on the gallows cart
Created beauty held my heart.

The aardvark and the onager
Were stabled at my sepulchre.

In that deep den the King of bliss
Broke my heart and gave me His.

‘This for your doom and penance take,
Be merry always for My sake.’

He gave me a white stone to bear
With my true name written there.

Without end I will say,
Laus tibi, Domine! ( praise the Lord )

The Goal – Leonard Cohen

This is from Leonard Cohen’s posthumous album Thanks for the Dance,produced by his son, Adam Cohen. The album was released on November 22, 2019. It features tracks recorded by Leonard Cohen during the sessions for his last album before his death in 2016. First heard on Malcolm Gladwell’s podcast Broken Record. I can’t leave my […]

Nha Trang Early Afternoon

The view from my Nha Trang apartment’s terrace floor, early afternoon. What the hell am I doing lolling about there when there’s work to be done? I’m trying to rebuild some muscle by stair-climbing in between jags tapping away at this keyboard. I think it’s probably shrivelled a little after a long time without any […]

The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County

Story eight of The Best American Humorous Short Stories by Alexander Jessup, editor. This librivox recording is in the public domain. Story eight, The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County (1865 ) by Mark Twain. [From The Saturday Press, Nov. 18, 1865. Republished in The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County, and Other Sketches (1867), […]