Poems about mental health

Your Place

Joe at his flat

Last year, I wrote a poem (a pantoum) called 'This Place' about visiting my son in the adolescent psychiatric unit where he spent four months (read it here).

He now has his own flat, living independently with support. So I decided to write a follow-up poem of the same length in the same style, hoping that this will illustrate the wonderful progression.

This Place

I come to see you in this place
A train, a bus, a longish walk
A mask of growth veneers your face
We picnic, catch up, laugh and talk

A train, a bus, a longish walk
They brought you here to make you well
We picnic, catch up, laugh and talk
You've questions, jokes and tales to tell

Read Rhymes

Read Rhymes
26/04/2019 - 20:00

Janine is one of four poets taking part in REaD Rhymes Live - Disability Arts, Survivors Poetry, with local poets and open mic 

Venue: Karamel Restaurant, 6 Coburg Road, Wood Green, N22 6UJ

 

Restaurant opens at 7pm. Diners should call 020 8829  8989 for table reservations at this vegan restaurant/arts centre

Not OK

I saw a poster the other day
that said it's OK
to not be OK

I was sitting in a waiting room
while others sit
or just exist
on a waiting list
for months or years
Worsening trauma, growing fears
Not serious enough to jump the queue
or get what's good for you
Bide your time
stand in line
wait your turn
And as you wait, maybe you'll learn
to be more resilient
that would be brilliant
Parity of esteem?
in your dreams
The stuff of inspriation memes
Buzz words
fuzz words
nothing does words
Set targets
trust the market
It will decide
and it will provide
for those who pay

Revise the System

Work hard, be conscientious, be afraid
Your life won't be worth living if you fail
The only thing that matters is your grade

Feel guilty for each error you have made
Learn quotes by rote and don't stop to exhale
Work hard, be conscientious, be afraid

Of falling short of A-star accolade
Don't eat, don't sleep, travail your skin to pale
The only thing that matters is your grade

Harvey is a Sex Addict

Harvey Weinstein is an addict
Harvey, he just has to have it
Harvey's checked into a clinic
Not convinced? You heartless cynic
Harvey can not help himself
Please pray for Harvey's failing health

Get a Grip

It's World Mental Health Day, so ...

SNAP OUT OF IT
Snap out of taking orders
Snap out of blame
Snap out of 'disorders'
Snap out of shame
Snap out of austerity
Snap out of stressors
Snap out of poverty
Snap out of pressures
Snap out of 'raising awareness'
and start raising hell
This system's sick
It isn't well

Crazed Loner

Crazed Loner - a poem about the portrayal of mental ill-health in the murder of Jo Cox MP, performed at Ealing TUC International Women's Day celebration.

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