by Stephanie Ramos | 9:22 pm

There’s something about the art of writing while dealing with your mental stability that simply amazes me. Your mind can be full of overwhelming things or memories, but one thing that can be developed and used in your favor is poetry. Mental health and poetry can go hand in hand even if it doesn’t seem like it. I have been so much into writing since I was a young girl, but was always scared to actually let my personal thoughts out for the world to see. You see, there’s so much strength in vulnerability and creating art from such a dark place, somehow, it can be therapeutic and for some people, it can even be the start of healing.

You don’t have to be a professional writer nor a poet. You just need to have an open mind, a piece of paper and a pen and lastly, a willing to create. See how simple it can be? You don’t need to stress or overthink what you want to write. You just need to make it seem natural and you will be good to go.

Poetry

Let’s Start by Defining What is Poetry?

According to Lexico, poetry is a literary work in which the expression of feelings and ideas is given intensity by the use of distinctive style and rhythm; poems collectively or as a genre of literature. It can also be a quality of beauty and intensity of emotion regarded as characteristic of poems.

For me, poetry is simply the art of expressing my feelings in a way that can be appealing to me or other people.

Your writing does not need to be perfect for you to create your poetry. You don’t need to make every word rhyme, in fact, your words don’t need to rhyme. You’re in control of every aspect of your work and of every word you decide to incorporate into your content. There are a lot of ways to write poetry it doesn’t need to be only a certain way nor it needs to resemble what you were thought in school. Yes, that’s the most common, more professional-like way but don’t emphasize on making it seem like you’re reflecting what you think other people want to see in your work. I mean, if you’re publishing your poetry maybe you do need to take some extra precautions with what you’re portraying and how you’re doing it, but if you’re not sharing it with anyone then go ahead and write what you want, what you feel, what you think. Keep in mind that it doesn’t have to be perfect.

Now that we discussed what poetry is and what my definition of it is, let’s take a look on what poetry means to different poets.

Poets Definition

“Poetry is not a turning loose of emotion, but an escape from emotion; it is not the expression of personality, but an escape from personality. But, of course, only those who have personality and emotions know what it means to want to escape from these things” T. S. Eliot

“Poetry is indeed something divine. It is at once the centre and circumference of knowledge; it is that which comprehends all science, and that to which all science must be referred. It is at the same time the root and blossom of all other systems of thought; it is that from which all spring, and that which adorns all; and that which, if blighted, denies the fruit and the seed, and withholds from the barren world the nourishment and the succession of the scions of the tree of life. It is the perfect and consummate surface and bloom of all things; it is as the odor and the color of the rose to the texture of the elements which compose it, as the form and splendor of unfaded beauty to the secrets of anatomy and corruption.” Percy Bysshe Shelley

 

”Poetry is when an emotion has found its thought and the thought has found words. Poetry is what gets lost in translation.” Robert Frost

“Poetry is what in a poem makes you laugh, cry, prickle, be silent, makes your toe nails twinkle, makes you want to do this or that or nothing, makes you know that you are alone in the unknown world, that your bliss and suffering is forever shared and forever all your own.” Dylan Thomas

“I would define, in brief, the Poetry of words as the Rhythmical Creation of Beauty. Its sole arbiter is taste. With the intellect or with the conscience, it has only collateral relations. Unless incidentally, it has no concern whatever either with duty or with truth.” Edgar Allan Poe

mental health and poetry

How to Incorporate Poetry Into Your Mental State?

Mental health can be such a complicated and complex topic for so many people, including myself. Sometimes we get stuck or we don’t know what to do to. It’s difficult and scary to think of letting all those intrusive thoughts out in a way that can be comfortable yet satisfying to us.

You can create poetry with basically any topic you can imagine.

Here are some, regarding mental health that you can use:

• Depression

• Anxiety

• PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder)

• Trauma

• Bipolar disorder

• Social anxiety

• Eating disorders, among other mentally illnesses

I am in no way saying that mental illness has no impact on you nor that it can be a topic to make it seem like it’s something positive about your life. Mental health and poetry do not equal a happy or perfect life. It just means that you have the power and ability to turn something negative, something that’s deeply hurting you and taking so much from you, into something that can be a hobby or simply something that can make you proud and feel like you’re achieving something. I know how draining and challenging it is to feel empowered or feel like you’re capable of doing something while dealing with these illnesses. You have the power to take all of those negative and intrusive thoughts into something that’s positive for you and something in which you can look back and feel proud of yourself for doing said thing.
If you don’t like writing or writing poetry makes you feel too anxious, you don’t need to do it. It’s not a requirement but a way of communicating with yourself. You can just write, it doesn’t need to be poetry but just a journal-time of experience in which you can make it a daily thing of writing everything that you’re feeling or just simply your thoughts, even if you don’t think they matter, because believe me, they do.

If you don’t like writing at all, you can just search for other people’s poetry or art. A lot of us love sharing our work with people like you who enjoy researching, expanding their knowledge and even getting inspired by other people’s work. If you enjoy reading I recommend you search for poets in the mental health department. You’d be surprised by the amount of people that write about mental health.

 

If you have any poems that you would like to share, please don’t hesitate in sharing them on the commment section below

Comments

Selenity Jade

This is a very interesting idea, thank you.  I suffer from anxiety and I’m definitely not into poetry, but I was curious.  I AM a writer, however.  Just not of poetry.  But it’s definitely a good idea as a way to express those emotions that certain disorders can cause, like fear and sadness and hopelessness.  Expressing emotion is always a positive thing for mental health, even if no one reads what you wrote.  Excellent idea!

Oct 07.2019 | 09:35 pm

    Stephanie Ramos

    Thank you! 

    Oct 08.2019 | 12:00 am

Christopher Harvey

Thank you for your input on the topic. I have to say that agree that poetry is a great relief if nothing else for some mental disorders.  I have had anxiety/depression for many years now and one thing that helps me is writing music.  In a way, it’s poetry because I write a lot of lyrics.  It’s an outlet. It helps me if nothing else, escape for a while and attempt to explain the way I feel. I don’t think there is an absolute to the problem but poetry and art of any kind are definitely one way to cope.

Oct 07.2019 | 09:38 pm

    Stephanie Ramos

    I agree with you. Art is such a healing way of expressing what you’re feeling 

    Oct 08.2019 | 12:03 am

Chris

Your article brings up so much emotions for me as someone who is living with mental health issues. Your point of turning the daily negative realities into a beautiful hobby is a noble idea. I wonder why I never thought about that. So simple, yet so true. 

I also love your disclaimer that adding poetry to mental health problems does not equate to a perfect or happy life automatically. 

Thanks for this encouragement worth sharing.

Oct 07.2019 | 09:48 pm

    Stephanie Ramos

    I am so sorry you’re dealing with this. I really hope you’re managing. 

    Thank you so much for taking the time to read this. I really appreciate it.

    Oct 08.2019 | 12:05 am

Henderson

Poetry really brings relief and i am a big testimony of that. I didn’t really have what ill completely call a mental issue because it was more of an emotional thing for me and i had to with time, deal with the problem. Luckily for me, i was able to get some soul-lifting poems. I have not thought of writing poems myself but it is a thing id like to give a try. Thanks for sharing.

Oct 08.2019 | 12:24 am

John

I have been suffering from depression for a while now and didn’t know that there was another genre of what I wrote that could really help me. Seeing this looks like a very big hope for me so ill be able to pour my heart and express my feeling. I write normally, as a freelancer so this will be a good opportunity to daddle away from prose into something different. It will be a sort of challenge for me though but I’m ready for that. Thank you for sharing those definitions as well.

Oct 08.2019 | 12:42 am

Wendy

Unfortunately, I don’t have a poem to share with you but I do want to tell you that I thoroughly enjoyed reading your post. I love to write and have used journaling in the past to help me cope with stress and anxiety. Somehow being able to release your feelings is very calming. I’ve never tried my hand at poetry but I can see how it would be helpful with mental health and well being. 

Oct 08.2019 | 12:44 am

    Stephanie Ramos

    Really hope you’re coping and doing alright. You’re doing great! 

    Oct 08.2019 | 12:49 am

Carol5162

I totally agree that writing it down is one great way to relieve your inner tension and just let it out. Really therapeutic. I see that a lot of poetry this days does not seem to focus on rhymes unlike before. People just put their words down and the message is still amazing. I like your statement on using poetry to to take over the power of something negative and turn it to your advantage. Thank you for these inspirations. Great article.

Oct 08.2019 | 12:47 am

    Stephanie Ramos

    Thank you for reading! 

    Oct 08.2019 | 12:50 am

Scott Hinkle

Thank you for this interesting an informative post.

Poetry can play many roles when it comes to mental health…

It can be a way of expressing yourself and letting others know what you’re going through.  It can help you “vent” and relieve a lot of pressure.  It can even be a way to bring a calming effect to your life.

There’s more but it really is a multi-faceted tool if you look at it.

I have a friend who’s son used poetry to express himself and open up about the trials in his life.  It wasn’t easy for him but it was liberating and allowed him to start a road to recovery that might not have been possible otherwise.

Thank you again for this.  It brought back some good memories for me.

Scott

Oct 08.2019 | 12:54 am

Donny

All along I never realised what it really was, why I really did it but every time I did write something that was really bothering or how I was really feeling I felt really better and I called it ,”pouring myself on paper.”

It worked, pretty much every time and before I knew it I just realised over the past 3 years the diary I used for that is almost full with so much I wrote about myself and about love and about relationships and heart breaks. Poetry really does have something to do with mental health. 

Anyways does everyone have a poetic side or some people have their own things different from poetry?

Oct 08.2019 | 01:00 am

    Stephanie Ramos

    Just like journaling, poetry can open so many doors deep inside you that you didn’t even know were possible to reach and that’s the beauty of it. 

    Poetry has no exception. As long as you’re into it and it’s sometbing you can enjoy, the possibilities are endless. 

    Oct 08.2019 | 02:01 am

Danijel

Hello Stephanie, I must say that this article is very helpful and informative. Honestly, I like to write but I would never think about expressing my feelings with poetry. You gave me such a great idea as sometimes (often) happens to me that I get anxious and depressed because of life problems. I will seriously think about writing poetry in my hard moments, thank you for sharing.

Oct 09.2019 | 08:18 pm

    Stephanie Ramos

    thank you for taking time to read!

    Oct 09.2019 | 09:06 pm

Rodarrick

It is an extra ordinary thing to see what poetry can achieve when incorporated to our mental state of mind. Through poetry, we develop from just being an ordinary to having our thoughts immortalised. This is very great and your writing on it is immense. People that suffers from mental imbalance or even anxiety can make use of poetry as a means of getting free from everything going on in their mind or brain by putting it out into writing. Very good view you gave shared on it

Oct 09.2019 | 08:22 pm

    Stephanie Ramos

    Thank you so much for reading! 

    Oct 09.2019 | 09:07 pm

Bella

Poetry is a great escape routine to any one who suffers from any form of mental defect at all. The best possible means to get away from such is through poetry. I write poems and it has become a way of life to getting me from hurysful mental states. This is interesting for me to know of and I will surely keep getting at it. You are right on with your summation on it. A short poetry that I would like to share is.

Ode to the unknown
For its laden with puzzles of mystery
Which its deciphering gives mastery.

Ode to the unborn
Thou are the hope of this barbarous clan
Through thee, the flowers should bloom

Ode to money
The wheel of evangelism
Who enslave all men.

Ode to tears
Thy flow purge the souls
And cleanse men off pains

Ode to karma
Pegasus of reward
That rageth at evil and grineth at good

Ode to death
The only constancy in the universe
Whom all flesh hideth from.

Ode to you
Who ponders not
Having read this.

Oct 09.2019 | 08:28 pm

    Stephanie Ramos

    Thank you so much for taking the time to read and for sharing your work. You are doing amazing! 

    Oct 09.2019 | 11:15 pm

Sabrina

This article is very interesting. Thanks for your words.

Oct 16.2019 | 02:38 am

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