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Chatterton Rises A Spring Community Poem

A Poetic City
Daffodils

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The community poem developed for Glenside Hospital Museum by Caroline Burrows as part of the Poetic City programme is now available.

People were invited to:

‘Write a ‘rhyming couplet’ which has two lines that rhyme,
About ‘Well-Being’ to cheer us towards springtime.’

The couplet needed to include any word taken from ‘The Death of Chatterton’s Romanticised Suicide’. by Caroline Burrows (@VerseCycle). You can read the results below.

My bicycle and I soar into the cloud,
Dancing on the pedals and standing proud.
Simon Bailey

My culture’s dead, one thousand martyrs,
Suppose I’ll remake my sourdough starter.
Catherine Barber

As we head towards spring there is great hope at last,
Birds chirp, flowers bloom, good times are coming fast.
Pat Burrows

From the beginning, life and death have been old neighbours.
Also viruses and cells, sharing the same sea, like old sailors.
Fran Calderón

We landed in lockdown, not seeing
The burden would be on well-being.
Janet Floyer

Seeds crack their casings, turn another wink under the cover then stretch from their bed,
Sweep away remnants of sleep dust to resuscitate all that withered in their stead. Christine Hall

I dream of the exquisite far views,
That from climbing tall mountains ensues.
Graham Horn

The emperor’s new prose is one of fiction,
But joy is not lost, it just needs conviction.
Grahame Hullett

Murmuration blessed my drive tonight,
Exquisite community alive in flight.
Kev McVeigh

Sometimes in order to climb the wall to good mental health,
We need to use the planks of hope and forgiveness to build stairs of acceptance for the self.
Kizzy Wade

Optimism is doomed to disappointment,
But pessimism is not the ointment.
Anwyl Cooper-Willis

This lockdown, in people’s minds, verses were sleeping,
Each person took one word they grew with editing,
Clusters of flowers blossomed into sentences,
Which they gathered in bouquets sharing joyful experiences.
Caroline Burrows

Glenside Hospital Museum explores the history of mental health treatment to change negative attitudes about mental illness, and to speak out. Silence is a cause of stigma. The museum displays artifacts, images, and data from the chapel which was part of Bristol’s Victorian asylum, the Stoke Park Colony of Hospitals, and Beaufort World War I Hospital.

A Poetic City is supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund using money raised by National Lottery players.

National Lottery Heritage Fund
Photo credit: Melanie Kelly.

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