Poetry and Wellbeing an introduction

 In Poetry

Poetry is self-expression.  Whether you are writing about your deep inner feelings, or a vase on the windowsill, you are expressing yourself.  Your thoughts and reflections about your emotions, or the way you view those flowers, that windowsill.


Expressing yourself has long been studied and considered a way to relieve stress, trauma, and emotional turbulence.  We are told that “talking helps” and that “getting things off our chest” can make us feel better.  Writing is a form of speech.  With the rise of popular poets and the surge in poetry sales, we can see for ourselves how poetry acts as part of a conversation.  We do not write into a void.  We write, and the words are echoed back to us.  We write, and we connect with others.  Connection is vital.  It grounds us in our own moment.  It helps us to reach out.  For some of us, writing can feel easier than talking.  Poetry lets us know that this is okay.


Your poetry doesn’t need to be a masterpiece to help you.  It doesn’t need to be perfect to inspire others.  In the blog posts to follow, we look at the techniques and the craft of writing.  But there is value in every poem you write.  You can write about feelings, or thoughts, or images/ memories/ moments.  The act of writing is also an act of capturing something essential and, as a poet, you are lucky in being able to do this.


Writing, like talking, can be a difficult process.  It can be painful.  It can open doors you’d rather leave closed.  But it can also be playful, and enjoyable, and fun.  It’s not all serious, and it’s not all doom and gloom.  You can enjoy yourself writing, lose yourself in language, entertain yourself and others.  Your poetry can make others laugh, if you want.  Your poetry can be silly.  Your poetry can be anything you want.  This is the magic of words.


Along with acting as a release for pain, poetry can also settle you in moments of peace or happiness.  It can allow you to see something positive- really see it- and focus yourself on it.


In this series we will explore the ways in which poetry can ground you in the present moment.  We will look at the therapeutic value of naming and describing your feelings.  We will explore the relationship between writer and reader: the ways in which not only writing, but also reading and relating to poetry, can meet our need to relate with others.  And we will review the techniques and skills used in creating a poem, and how these can affect the way that the poem makes you, or your reader, feel.



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