Don't put all your goods in the shop window.
This saying had application to a number of circumstances which she felt endangered my virtue: too-short skirts, mentioning my achievements, talking about the £500 I was due to inherit on my 18th birthday, looking anyone directly in the eye.
She might have added:
If you've got it, don't, whatever you do, please don't flaunt it.
But I know she would've been proud to know that in two weeks' time, I will be appearing with Carol Ann Duffy, Gillian Clarke, Jackie Kay, Imtiaz Dharker and John Sampson as part of their road trip of poetry events promoting independent bookshops. I wish she could've lived long enough to see me realise my dream of becoming a poet - I'll be putting a few of my goods in the shop window in her memory:
SHORE TO SHORE: Bridgnorth - Friday 24th June 7.30pm
Picador and Wenlock Books present Shore to Shore: Celebrating Poetry and Community with the Laureate and Friends, featuring Carol Ann Duffy, Gillian Clarke, Imtiaz Dharker, Jackie Kay, John Sampson plus local poet Liz Lefroy
Theatre On The Steps, Stoneway Steps, Bridgnorth, Shropshire, WV16 4BD