What’s your word for 2023?

By Philip Cowell

Street Wisdom’s poet-in-residence, Philip Cowell, has a challenge for you!

I was just going for one of my wanders, here at the start of a new set of days, when the question floated in front of me: what word would I like to take with me into 2023?

It doesn’t have to be the word, just word.

It doesn’t have to have an answer for everything, and it doesn’t have to be with me the whole year. I could let it go at some point, in April for example. Once it’s done its bit.

But yes, a word, a single word, that could help take me into this new year of possibility and potential.

So I used Street Wisdom to find it!

I spotted things I was drawn to, and noticed what I wasn’t drawn to.

I slowed down.

I noticed my breathing.

I found the beauty in everything (or certainly lots of things), even that normally ‘gross’ bit of chewing gum on the ground (it had such a lovely pattern).

Then I asked the streets my question (in my head). I said, Streets! Hi! Show me some options for my word for 2023. Thank you, please.

And then I just carried on wandering and simply let the word come to me, whenever it wanted to come out of its hiding place.

Admittedly, nothing did for the first few minutes, though I loved the way the sky was opening up a bit more.

Then, suddenly, the word “Sight” popped up. It was on a sign and I couldn’t see anything else on it apart from that (ironically).

Gorgeous, I thought, I’II have that.

I decided to keep going, just to check if anything else wanted to come through.

Ah ha! There was the word “Dance” waving at me, on a movie poster for the new Whitney Houston film. Love it.

Then nothing much more shouted out at me, though I enjoyed the street a bit more than previously, and felt I could feel my feet on the ground. I was more in my body, in the moment, so to speak.

Ahhh, that’s nice. Sight and Dance.

So there we have it. Sight and/or Dance. Which will it be?

I love the word Sight. For the clarity. The transparency. The seeing and being seen.

I love the word Dance. For the grace. The movement. The possibility in flow.

Can I break my own rule and have two words?

Of course I can, this is a game.

And maybe they’re the same thing, anyway?

Surely it’s when we realise we’re dancing that we really see what’s going on?



Inspired? Have a go yourself at finding your word for 2023. Use the Street Wisdom process, even just briefly, to get grounded and into your body, and ask the streets to show you some options for your word. Let us know how it goes! Fancy some more Street Wisdom in 2023? Join a Walkshop near you, or head out for your own wander right now with our Tune Ups. Buy your own copy of Wanderful, all profits go back into Street Wisdom to help keep it free. Share your insights and follow us @StreetWisdom_