Embracing Poetry

What else is there to do on a cool, May day but attend a poetry reading?

Chamber Poets

What else is there to do on a fine Saturday afternoon but recite poetry in the company of accomplished local poets and Cate Kennedy. Don’t know her? Here’s a starting point.

Cate Kennedy poems

Chamber Poets #57

Recalling my own experiences with anorexia in the 70’s has heightened my interest in good mental health. Many people live with the shadow mental health issues every day. Australian statistics. But do we notice them? A recently reported ABC news item outlined the 30% increase in paediatric mental health admissions into EDs (Emergency Departments). The article rattled around in my brain and this poem resulted from the musings.


La Traviata, another night enriched. The middle exists. Shapes: 2D, 3D, squares become cubes and circles become spheres. Complexity defies, erratic shapes and other dimensions. Sunrise is always augmented by clouds. Grey things so massive and insubstantial are transformed by a touch of gold, dressed to kill like movie stars on the red carpet. The weight of the black dog sleeping on my bed constitutes a poor man’s diet. Strains of Verdi stretched taut twang past. Gossamer threads bind the dark matter. They defy physics but have purpose. No beginning, no ending. Funnels and spirals and webs exemplify the perfection of asymmetry, the tenacity of a warped reality’s mistakes.

Up and down. Alone. Up and down.

Poor choices beckon in velvet voices. Bespoken. Oh so special! Coddled in the damp, cool cloud, the razor’s edge of reason bites sharply slicing open the jaded reality. Thoughts tear forth, slamming hard into the bones of the skull. The gowned cleavage of opera singers appeases the eye only momentarily. Combining, reverberating and splitting mutations arise. The mind searches for duck-egg blue Forget-Me-Nots. July is there in golden cursive. Is it summer or winter? Is the world the right way up? Antarctic winds slash at the outworn. Fear jams progress. Stuck again, in the middle of the web, in the centre not centred. The cloud, another unrealised prism of reality. Violetta dies. It’s physical.

Jumbled miles of thought yarn thwart my motor cortex. It’s a walnut with two shrunken halves. The blur on the horizon dims the promise of more. Like setting silastic, it threatens permanence. But desperation urges, pushing through the imagined, impenetrable impossibilities. Water cool and calming flows. It leads down the drain of self-discovery. But I’m a child playing on the see-saw.


This poem is part of my mental health awareness series.

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