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How Poetry Can Heal You

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How Poetry Can Heal You

 

Write a poem. Yes, you can, even if you’ve never written one before! Just sit down with a nice, smooth pen and crispy paper and dip into your heart. Let your thoughts and feelings flow freely. After all, you are not doing this to win a prize. Write about something that has been on your mind for a while: someone you love but cannot express your feelings to? A source of worry at work? The agony of waiting for a medical report? Pour it all out on paper. It doesn’t need to rhyme, as long as you enjoy the cadence of your own words. You’ll find that writing a poem can help clear your head and lift your spirits beautifully.

Paint your poem! Try to sketch joy, loneliness, or the mood of that poem you wrote when you were feeling restless. Chase that thought with your camera. Who knows where it might lead?

Share your verse. Discuss it with others, and you can get valuable feedback on your style and content, besides touching a chord with those who listen. Members of Caferati, a literary club that has members from all walks of life across major cities in India, affirm that their monthly poetry-reading sessions help them bond and refresh.

In Praise of Poetry

Ink runs from the corners of my mouth
There is no happiness like mine.
I have been eating poetry.
~Mark Strand, “Eating Poetry,” Reasons for Moving, 1968

Medicine, law, business, engineering, these are noble pursuits and necessary to sustain life.  But poetry, beauty, romance, love, these are what we stay alive for.
~Dead Poet’s Society

Poetry is ordinary language raised to the nth power.  Poetry is boned with ideas, nerved and blooded with emotions, all held together by the delicate, tough skin of words.
~Paul Engle, New York Times, 17 February 1957

Poetry is plucking at the heartstrings, and making music with them.
~Dennis Gabor

Next page: Some of my favorite poems

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Shubhra Krishan

Writer, editor and journalist Shubhra Krishan is the author of Essential Ayurveda: What it is and what it can do for you (New World Library, 2003), Radiant Body, Restful Mind: A Woman's book of comfort (New World Library, 2004), and The 9 to 5 Yogi: How to feel like a sage while working like a dog (Hay House India, 2011).

52 comments

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5:07PM PST on Jan 4, 2012

Ta.

8:28PM PST on Dec 24, 2011

thank you for the advice

1:29PM PST on Dec 19, 2011

great poems darling. Thanks for the advice.

12:36PM PST on Dec 18, 2011

writing poems always helps me, and I do love reading some good poetry

8:13AM PST on Dec 18, 2011

thanks

i like this ultra relaxing and relevant short inspirational video poem from Sri Chinmoy (i dont know much about Sri Chinmoy and his teaching, but I agree with his words here:

http://www.srichinmoy.tv/3698/imagine-with-poems-by-sri-chinmoy/


"World peace can be achieved
When, in each person,
The power of love
Replaces the love of power

- Sri Chinmoy (from http://quotes.poetseers.org/)


12:58AM PST on Dec 18, 2011

Just reading that article and the examples give made my soul purr...and I realize that is a very healing feeling; so point well made!!

10:27PM PST on Dec 16, 2011

I used poetry to process my grief after my friend, later my brother,, then 9/11, just putting the feelings to words helped so much. I kept writing, and last year one got published. Its art, and makes you see the world again, sometimes by helping you hold the view slanted a little so things seem to get a new balance

10:11PM PST on Dec 16, 2011

Words singing the soul's truth like the single chime of a bell casting stillness upon the fray

1:56PM PST on Dec 16, 2011

On some days this is how I think:


Ever had a day when you wondered whether is was
worth getting out of bed?
Maybe you can't know for sure what animals are
feeling. But do you believe that little brown birds
get up in the morning and think about how
depressingly grey the sky is?
Do you think they wonder about how much prettier
all the other birds are, and how their voice is
kind of small? And do they maybe decide that they
just won't sing that day because they are so sad
about all of this?
No, they get up and belt out their songs, day
after day.

5:47AM PST on Dec 16, 2011

maybe

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