Full Title: “Poetry Pharmacy webchat: Feeling blue? Could a poem be the answer? Ask William Sieghart (via Guardian)
Are you lonely, nervous about Christmas or frustrated with relatives? William Sieghart of the much-loved Poetry Pharmacy will be in to prescribe you a poem for your problems on Friday 15 December at 1pm GMT. Post your requests in the comments, here.
Join The Guardian for a Poetry pharmacy session with William Sieghart
One day as he was crossing a street, National Poetry Day founder William Sieghart saw a man be hit by a car. After getting his heart beating again, William was left with blood on his hands – and a poem in his head: Ambulances by Philip Larkin. It did not comfort him, but it offered complicity, William says: “Poetry is not a lullaby. Poems help you feel you are not mad, that what you are going through has been experienced by others.”
Motivated by his wish to “get people to drop their fear of the P-word”, William began setting up a tent at literary festivals with two armchairs and a prescription pad and allocated visitors 10-minute slots. Hours later, people would still be queuing to get their poem – and have their stories and feelings heard. After collecting poems to help people with everything from feeling overwhelmed by news to sexual repression, from loneliness to romantic boredom, William published The Poetry Pharmacy: Tried-and-True Prescriptions for the Heart, Mind and Soul.