World Poetry Day

World Poetry Day is an international day celebrating the power and beauty of words and poetry. Poetry can be a wonderful and cathartic way of working through feelings and emotions. Many famous poets used words to work through their mental health issues, including Sylvia Plath, Edgar Allen Poe, Lord Byron and John Keats. Why not check out some of the wonderful poems that will be available today on World Poetry Day?

To celebrate World Poetry Day, we are sharing some of the amazing poetry written one of our very own service users. The highly talented Akinola Olusanya felt compelled to express through the power of poetry how it can feel to experience a mental health issue. We think that this extremely moving poem gives a powerful insight into how mental health problems can leave you feeling deflated and unlike your usual self, as well as touching on feelings of isolation and the fear of stigma.  Read below:

An afternoon when butterflies flap colourful wings

That’s when I think

There is no colour in me;

I work in the city, climbed up that ladder

Got me the office

Seems I’m living the dream;

No one knows my pain, no one understands

No one there, when Doctor Chen said

Result of an early trauma – it’s a mental illness

All colour has left me;

Can’t tell my friends, cant share with cousin Fred

Mocked, ridiculed, ostracised

– my greatest fears;

Listen to me; don’t crucify

Listen to me; don’t stigmatize

Mental illness happens

We need to talk about this;  

Let’s talk mental health

Get this conversation going

Let’s put back

Some radiant colour here.



Have you written some poetry about your experiences of mental health? Perhaps you’ve put pen to paper yourself in honour of World Poetry Day. We’d love to hear from you. To submit your poem to us, please email [email protected]

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