Frequently Asked Questions
(Independent articles about Allen Jesson
and A Gift of Poetry can also be found at
There is also a review here:
Q. Are you a one man band?
I used to be but now I am surrounded by some fabulously talented people. Apart from some very creative gift and card designers, my two main stalwarts are Beth and Shelley (and they seem to make miracles happen on a daily basis). Apart from being the "sparks in the engine",
they are both really nice people, which makes my life even easier
(and more fun). In truth, they deserve a page all to themselves
(and here it is).
Q. Who can you write poems for?
Literally anyone and any occasion. Poems are made for special times such as birthdays, weddings and anniversaries. They are a really excellent way of getting a message across such as "I love you" or "thank you" but they can also be used to send much more serious and heartfelt messages, of which there are many examples on the site.
Q. What if I don't like the first draft?
Then I will rewrite your poem until you are happy with the outcome. It normally takes two to three drafts to get a poem exactly right and this is a collaborative process. For the record, my personal best (or worst) is nine drafts (but we got there in the end).
Q. How long will my poem be?
It depends on how much there is to say. I do not charge by the length and some of my poems can run to 30 verses (although I feel that these can be a little long). As an average expect somewhere between 15 and 20 verses, but it does depend on the subject matter.
Q. How do I pay you ? What are the payment terms ?
There are payment options on site operated by highly respected third parties. I ask for a deposit up front and only ask for the balance when you are happy with your final draft. If you don't like using credit cards then you can also pay by check or money order but that does slow down the process somewhat. I'm sorry, but I do have to insist on the deposit "up front", as this is my only method of sorting the "wheat" from the "chaff".
Q. What do your clients think about you?
Generally they are very pleased with my work. I currently achieve a 95% satisfaction rating. I operate a money back guarantee system so I do actually refund the deposit for about 1 in 20 - but as the saying goes: You can't please all of the people all of the time.
It is also a no quibble guarantee - if people are not happy then they get their deposit back (and I resolve to try harder next time).
Q. How do I know that you will deliver what you promise? Will I get value for money?
My track record speaks for itself and the many, many customer testimonials are my testament. I have been offering this service since 1998, which in Internet terms is a lifetime. Complaints are rare and those received are dealt with in a professional and adult manner.
12% does seem high I know. But I think I've done my sums correctly. The credit card companies hit me twice for the two transactions (deposit and balance), the administration costs are certainly cheaper and my overdraft charges are reduced. I also offer a no quibble money back guarantee.
Q. Your competitors are cheaper so why should I
go with you?
Actually, I don't think they are. You get what you pay for. My works are all original. This is the only place in the world where you will get a "Jesson" poem. I am pleased to report that this is one of the most popular personalized poetry sites in the world (according to Google). A lot of other personalized poetry sites on the Internet just reprint previously written works. I write every poem from scratch and although on the cheaper packages I may borrow a verse or two,
every poem is unique. Guaranteed.
Q. You must get a lot of requests, how do I know that you won't treat me like a number?
I manage my workload so that I can give you and your poem the attention that you deserve. I think of every one of my poems as "special" so I treat them (and you) as such. I have also recently "retired" from the rat race to concentrate full time on my writing career. Believe me, you have my (and my bank manager's) undivided attention :) (PS. Help ! :)
Q. How do I know you can you deliver to meet my time frames?
I work within strictly promised timelines. It is part of my promise. If you have a tighter deadline than advertised then I will pull out the stops for you.
To be honest, this is something that comes and goes on the site. If I'm too busy you will not see it. I do it because a lot of people need that final piece of encouragement to make a decision. If they save and I can get some extra work in the quiet times, then I'm happy.
Q. What does the process involve?
It is easy to order your poem. Please follow this link here.
Q. How long will my poem take?
It depends on the package that you choose, you could have your first draft within 48 hours from now. Even with the Economy Package you will receive your first draft within 7 days. Physical delivery normally takes about four to seven days once the drafting process is complete. We now ship direct from the USA and use the US Postal Service with full tracking. We also ship direct from the UK, the cost of which is included in the price.
Q: How much will my poem cost? What benefits are included in each package?
Q: How much detail do you require?
The more information given - the more personal the poem ! If you get stuck on a question then please ignore it, but please try to give as much information, history and background as you can. Thanks. The POEM REQUEST FORM is here, these are the questions that you will be asked: Who are you ? Who do you want the poem written for ? Why do you want the poem written ? What are the key messages you would like the poem to send ? Do you have any funny, sad, happy, embarrassing or otherwise memorable moments that you would like to share ? Do you have any other comments or thoughts ? What style of poem would you prefer ? (Happy, sad, romantic etc.)
Q. How can I trust you? Is this a scam?
This is one of the top 50,000 web-sites in the world. You can trust me. This is not a scam. I make a modest living from writing poetry for people such as yourself. My phone number and address details are clearly displayed on the site. Payment is made via trusted third parties so you will always have the right of refusing payment or claiming a refund. I have a long standing verified PayPal account, my book is sold on Amazon.com and I have many, many satisfied customers. I don't generally post their contact details on the site (unless they ask me to), but I'm happy to provide referees if asked.
Q: If I request a poem, will my request and the poem be published on this site?
Only on your say so. I have written many poems that are never published. If you do not give permission then the poem will not be published. Guaranteed.
I guess it started at school really, you know - please write a poem for homework, that sort of stuff. Well, I found writing poetry relatively "easy" and the results were reasonably encouraging. So I did what every self respecting teenager would do - nothing. I basically didn't write another line for about twenty years. I then went on a Leadership course and we were encouraged to get in touch with "ourselves". As a result, one of the things I did was write a couple of poems, I showed them to a couple of friends and family and they foolishly encouraged me to continue writing. That was eight years ago and what you see on this site is a result of an initial challenge (by Humphrey Armstrong, the course leader) and the subsequent encouragement from friends and family. (I have often wondered what could be achieved in this world if we all challenged and encouraged more often, especially our children). In 1998 I hooked up to the Internet and purchased a book "How to build your web-site in 24 hours". Four months (!) later, I had my first web-site up and running and waited for the mass of visitors to come and view my work. Of course, nothing happened and the counter increased every time I visited, but not much more. It was then I struck on the idea of writing poems for charity, because I had already started writing poems for friends and family's weddings, birthdays and anniversaries. I approached a couple of "Free Sites" to feature my site and was literally flooded with requests. So much so, we formed a loose group (Poets For People) of like minded poets who gave their time for charity. We did this for a couple of years but became increasingly frustrated with people who would request the poem, receive the poem and then we would hear nothing back whatsoever, not so much as a thank you. This became soul destroying after a while so I decided to "commercialize" the site and charge people up front (I then donate 25% of the proceeds to various charities around the world). This has worked really well and the popularity of the site is outstanding. A Gift Of Poetry is now attracting over 10000 visitors per day and is growing every month !
What is your background?
Pretty normal stuff really. Born in 1958 in Northampton, England. Born in a council house (government owned) but Mum and Dad bought their first house in 1960 (Mum still lives there today). Great parents, two great older brothers, strong family environment. Went to Raeburn Road Primary (Tin Tack, so called because it was made of tin and tacks), Parklands Primary, Cherry Orchard High School and Northampton Grammar School.
Went off the rails a lot as a teenager and Dad died when I was only 15. A very painful experience but one that has bound the remaining family tightly together, even though we live so very far apart. (I emigrated from England to Australia in 1991, after marrying an Australian girl in 1985). I now share my time between the UK and Australia and intend to spend more time in Africa and the States.
Left school three weeks early (at 16) and started work the following Monday for Gelders Spetra, a European transport company. Stayed in transport and logistics for best part of 30 years and that paid the bills (most of the time). Resigned from the "rat race" in December 2002 to concentrate on poetry (and other interesting projects).
What are your general thoughts on your poetry?
My poetry will never be critically acclaimed - I know and accept that. However, a lot of people seem to like my style and I see it as "everyman" poetry. I genuinely do try and write "from the heart" and know that when I pull a tear or an "ah-ha" then I have done OK. I also like to feel that maybe some of my poetry can help people and for example, that is one of the reasons I have Footprints as a featured poem on the site, as it may help someone realize the aftermath created by taking their own life.
What is your favorite subject and why do you write poems like you do?
A very good question and very hard to answer. I have not read a lot of other poets work, so I can safely say that I have not copied anyone's particular style. I will literally write a poem about anything, The Worm Ode is good proof of that statement ! I won't write a poem if it doesn't have anything to say, I must think of a dozen poems a week that I could write but discard the idea because they would have no real meaning or message. Poetry has a lot to do with emotion so I like a subject where that emotion is evident or easily aroused. For example, I wrote A Harbour View after being in Australia for a couple of years after realizing that most Australians generally take for granted their wonderful country. If you are interested, there are more of my thoughts on my writing here. There are even more here.
For the record, this is the start of the list of my top 20 movies (not in order of preference, too hard to sort) :
One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest (Jack Nicholson)
It's A Wonderful Life (1943)
Shawshank Redemption (Morgan Freeman)
28 Days (Sandra Bullock)
Something About Mary (Cameron Diaz)
Bicentennial Man (Robin Williams)
I.T. (Steven Spielberg)
The Sound of Music (Julie Andrews)
Life As A House (Kevin Kline)
Cool Hand Luke (Paul Newman)
The Great Escape (Steve McQueen)
Blazing Saddles (Mel Brooks)
Blow (Johnny Depp)
Sea Biscuit (Jeff Bridges)
Love Actually (Hugh Grant)
Story Of A Life (Harry Chapin)
Piano Man (Billy Joel)
Mandolin Wind (Rod Stewart)
Time In A Bottle (Jim Croce)
Sweet Painted Lady (Elton John)
Serenade for Strings in E Minor, Opus 20 (second movement)
(Sir Edward Elgar)
and many, many more.....
Where do you live?
East Mersea, Essex, England and
Stanwell Park, New South Wales, Australia.
How old are you?
45 going on 17
Fiction: Papillon by Henri Charriere.
The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
Early stuff by Wilbur Smith.
Recent "faction": Michael Moore (Dude, where's my country?)
and John Simpson (The Wars Against Saddam)
Like to eat?
Would like to be vegetarian but can't resist a barbeque.
Like to drink?
Cabernet Sauvignon from the Coonawarra, South Australia.
Three wisest words?
Everything in moderation.
Writing. This website. Family stuff. Having a beer with good friends.
Most important things in life?
Knowing what is important in life.
Not doing the bad habits too often !
Not So Proud Of?
Too few to mention (sorry Frank)
When Dad died (he was 46)
When my children were born.
Divorced with four children.
Best TV show?
Reading at the moment?
Q. What do you look like?
(Independent articles about Allen Jesson
and A Gift of Poetry can also be found at
If you have any other questions not answered here, please send an e-mail here. Thank you. Also, if you've got this far and have decided not to proceed with your order - I would value your reasons as to why you didn't go ahead. Again, please send me an e-mail here and I promise I won't bother you again. Thank you. Allen
A Gift of Poetry,
Essex CO5 8TA
Telephone: ++44 1206 385397
We also have an office in Florida, USA.
Please call Beth on: