Your entries should be sent to: [email protected]
And when submitting your entries please let us know who your favourite charity is. We are now offering cash prizes (£250) for the poets of the 12 ‘most liked’ poems and the same figure for their nominated charities.
Of the published poems so far, including today’s your chosen charities have been: MS (twice); Cancer Research; Rutherford School; Crohn’s & Colitis; British Heart Foundation; SCOPE; Revialize; Shekinah; Versus Arthritis; WWF; Alzheimer’s Society; AMAZE; Sutton Nightwatch; Stepping Stone Theatre for Mental Health; BRAKE and MIND (three times).
In honour of my dear friend Sue
Good night, God bless,
To you my friend Sue.
You will be able to open your own door now,
Invite your loved ones in for tea,
You will see your boyfriend Jack again,
And You won’t be in any pain.
You will be able to walk,
And be able to talk,
You will no longer need your chair.
Good night for ever
Your dear friend Susan
Poem by Susan Fletcher and submitted by her support worker Louise Reid
Susan’s favourite charity is the ‘Alzheimer’s Society’
“Little White Pill”
Little White Pill
You’re making me ill
And I’ve had my fill
Little White Pill,
I’m supposed to be chilled
But you’re starting a fire
Little White Pill
I’m taking you still
While longing for years
To be free
Little White Pill’s
Moving in for the kill
Can I break away
And get clean?
Poem submitted by Simon Tayler – whose favourite charity is MIND
Don’t pin it on my condition,
Pin it on the discrimination,
The language that is just lobbed around,
What your brain sends down your sensory and motor neurones when you come across me,
I may differ from you, aesthetically, audibly, and how I
But it’s what you predict, not the authentic answer.
Don’t pin it on my condition,
What about the builders who constructed roads without drop curbs and the fact there’s no way of knowing whether streets have them-so I have to pause and navigate my route rigorously?
Or the printers who didn’t design a braille alternative for menus and books and packages so I have to get someone to read the contents out and have certitude they are accurate, read at their pace?
What about the engineers who left the flaring red lights just for fire engines and ambulances and the people who when there’s an important announcement, don’t think to have subtitles or a BSL interpreter so my independence is snatched and I feel like I’ve been plonked on a murder mystery board game?
What about the manager at an airport or club who didn’t designate a quiet place to go when my sensory reflex is on super assertive mode?
Or the author and their agent who didn’t specify they wanted the calligraphy available on yellow pages or in a bolder font?
Or the manufacturer of my computer that I type phrases into, the voice is droning and there is an off-putting silence when I type my answer that isn’t a ringer to my vivacious, exuberant personality?
The thing is, I would let that drift in the breeze if they demonstrated a positive inclination,
The offer to help, a growth mindset,
I don’t mind if you’re ambivalent,
I just hope you communicate with me,
And see that I’ve got humour,
I’ve got wit,
When you sprint, I zip round in my chair, When you see something, I feel it with all my senses,
When music purrs into your ear, I feel the vibrations through my feet,
When you read or write something, I have to be creative and shuffle the information,
When you talk contracting the strings of your adam’s apple , I talk with my hands, computer or symbol book,
Yes, sometimes I feel down when I see my peers undergo tasks so easily,
How quickly they can get dressed,
How they can just enter a place or book an event without having to check access,
How they can fly through pages of a book, their cognitive wheels hardly churning,
How they don’t get underestimated just because of an impairment,
Sometimes I get praised for something when I’m just coping with life,
But with my condition,
I have zany experiences which make me more creative,
I feel emotions twice as potently as you which makes more emphatic,
I’ve learnt to shine light on the things that put me at a disadvantage,
That’s why I don’t call it a disability, That’s not the problem,
Your outlook is,
What leads to mental perishing
Poem submitted by Matilda Barrowman – whose favourite charity is AMAZE
Eyes, look to me
Eyes, look to me.
Our eyes don’t meet
Yours turn away from me.
Meet mine eyes
Which are true to yours.
Look to me
And you shall see,
Someone who is
Familiar to you.
So look at me,
With eyes straight
And we’ll both be
Together face on.
I’d like to meet
Don’t turn away from me.
Just meet mine eyes
And be seen to me.
Then maybe you can be
Someone who will
Become closer to me.
the new generation can’t see what I did,
changing beliefs and attitudes,
liberating the land from ignorance,
I can tell you about social distancing,
discontent with a label of a learning disability,
my movement and co-ordination impaired,
my mind misfires and fragments again,
there must be more than day centres and wards.
social change my first love,
paving the way was my dream,
diversity, equality and equal opportunity,
putting the pieces back together of myself,
like a jigsaw even if the missing pieces take years to turn up,
Some people said “Pull yourself together”
getting on with it with a hidden disability.
and wanted to be like other people,
but soon realised they wanted me to be like them
and I wasn’t so I broke free,
I couldn’t listen to some views,
so I stayed in a bubble and made my own rules,
Who did I really want to be?