Please Hear What I'm Not Saying
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Published Date :
Published By Fly on the wall poetry
ISBN : 9781999598600
Category : Poetry and Comedy
Format : Paperback
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Sue Mackrell:

Words are powerful and these words are more powerful than most. They burst through the gaps and silences surrounding mental health with brutal and searing honesty.
It is sometimes said that creativity comes from a dark place, forged from an intense sensitivity to the highs and lows of what it is to be human. It is certainly true of these poets, who write from direct experience of their own or loved ones’ mental illness.
Images are surprising, sometimes shocking. Grief is a ‘cruel handbag - /its catch snaps shut like jaws’ burying ‘an old compact,/hankie embroidered with an M.’ Clothes are ‘a pile of ugly cocoons’ provoking memories of childhood. When ‘Baby Blues’ /were cover for the hopeless days,’ a baby boy is strapped to his mother’s chest, hidden under a blue raincoat as his mother contemplates suicide. Another baby is ‘kicking out sweet baby legs -/his fat oaf of a mother crawling, hands and knees, walrusing the floor /in search of filth. Dementia is ‘a sleeping sickness/that makes a drought/of memory. Anxiety is to ‘walk on the needles /of all my worries ,/nettling and biting.’ Depression is ‘an unwelcome guest who occupies the best chair.’
In my own poem I try to convey the visceral jolt of a sudden descent into depression in the ‘hangman’s drop to Hades.’ But there is also hope, that ‘streaks of sunlight /will diminish the dark.’ There are moments of beauty, of appreciation of small moments, of survival in these poems which are accessible and engaging but also profound. Those who have felt isolated by mental illness may respond with a sense of recognition, and for others there are opportunities for new insights and understanding. Crass comments about ‘having an OCD day ‘ or patronising ‘jokes’ about ‘schizophrenia’ are challenged here in a way that is courageous and empowering.



A wonderful strong collection of poems from over a hundred poets from all corners of the world. There are poems which will make you cry and poems which will make you laugh in this collection. If you suffer with a mental health illness the poems in this book will make you realise you are not alone in your suffering.

sabelle Kenyon is a UK based poet and a graduate in Theatre: Writing, Directing and Performance from the University of York. Isabelle Kenyon is the author of poetry anthology, This is not a Spectacle and micro chapbook, The Trees Whispered, published by Origami Poetry Press. She is also the editor of MIND Poetry Anthology 'Please Hear What I'm Not Saying' and her latest release, Digging Holes To Another Continent, will be published by Clare Songbirds Publishing House, New York, this May. She performs at spoken word events such as 1000 Monkeys, in Guildford, and has opened Coventry Cathedral's Plum Line Festival. She is set to open the New Mills Arts Festival later this year. Her poems have been published in literary magazines such as Scrittura, Eskimo Pie, Anti Heroin Chic, Literary Yard, and Bewildering Stories. Anthologies and Competition credits: The Inkyneedles anthology, the Great British Write Off, the Wirral festival of Music, Speech and Drama, Poetry Rivals, and the Festival of Firsts. Third place in the Langwith Scott Award for Art and Drama and runner up in the Visit Newark Poetry Competition. You can read more about Isabelle and see her work at

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