A Recovery Blog

This blog is about my continuing recovery from severe mental illness. I celebrate this recovery by continuing to write, by sharing my music and artwork and by exploring Buddhist ideas and concepts. I claim that the yin/yang symbol is representative of all of us because I have found that even in the midst of acute psychosis there is still sense, method and even a kind of balance. We are more resilient than we think. We can cross beyond the edge of the sane world and return to tell the tale. A deeper kind of balance takes hold when we get honest, when we reach out for help, when we tell our stories.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Poem--First Draft

The other day I joined a poetry writing group called Crazy Poems on LiveJournal. It's a group for poets who suffer from mental illness. One of the founding poets set up a challenge to write a poem about one's healed self and this is what I came up with--first draft:

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Healthy Self


I see my healthy self as a phoenix rising from the ashes
A 500 year old bird transformed by fire and reborn to fly again.

Here's how I fly:

I sweep my house clean, brush my teeth
Wash and dry my body, my clothes.

I open doors and windows
I call out to friends and strangers alike--

"Come sit by me and tell your story
We'll weave our tapestries together
To form a stronger bond."

I look up and see the harmony in the clouds
I wait for the rain to fall

Water is nourishment
Earth is for growing things
And oceans hold time
In the rhythmic swell and release of the tides.

Everything is out in the open
The fig leaves fall
And we are naked
As the day we were born.

The shame is gone
And I am smiling.

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By the way, Pamela Spiro Wagner, who suffers from schizophrenia, has a new book of poetry out called We Mad Climb Shaky Ladders: Poems. You can buy her book on Amazon. Please do, she is an extremely talented poet with much insight into her illness.
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