Expressing mental health through poetry

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Expressing mental health through poetry

Postby poetryresearch » Mon Feb 24, 2020 12:53 pm

Hello everyone,

I am a student at Goldsmiths College and I am doing a project surrounding mental health in coastal areas.

I was hoping maybe you could help me by writing four lines of poetry about how you feel about living in Hastings? It can be positive, negative, whatever.

If possible the first and last lines should rhyme, but other than that, please feel free to write however and whatever you like. (Help with rhyming can be found on the survey).

It is completely anonymous so please feel free to share.

Thanks so much in advance for your help.

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Re: Expressing mental health through poetry

Postby Richard » Thu Aug 06, 2020 11:56 am

Dear Old Hastings

The 'Great Unwashed' arrive in poor clothes
Bohemians and beach-bums make it their home
Drop-outs and drifters all feel at ease
A Shangri-La where anything goes.

A holiday town for the working class
A spot for Day-trippers looking for fun
Women hooked on 'Bingo' and men on their beer
Boy chases girl with bright eyes and nice ass.

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Re: Expressing mental health through poetry

Postby seahermit » Thu Aug 06, 2020 5:31 pm

A curious kind of "survey", I am not sure whether I should contribute something .. nor quite sure what the project aims to finally achieve!

The whole point about Hastings is that it doesn't fit into the usual mode of seaside resorts, seems to have a character all of its own. I enjoyed Richard's first poem especially, but that is just one aspect of the town, there is some real creative talent here and an ongoing energy . Spot for working class day-trippers and some bingo, yes, but those are old and outdated aspects of many seaside towns, Hastings has for long gone off in a bohemian and colourful direction of it's own with many festivals and new things happening (virus lockdown permitting currently).

I suppose that is one reason I started my own website, wanted to give expression to my fascination with a mixed-up, many faceted town - both its negative and uplifting sides.

I suppose my short answer should have been that how can you sum up a place like Hastings in just four lines?! Well, maybe I will give it a try ..

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Re: Expressing mental health through poetry

Postby Richard » Thu Aug 06, 2020 8:10 pm

It is certainly a tall order to sum up the essence of what I feel about Hastings into four lines, with rhyming first and last.

Hastings captivates, we are lured in like simple, eager fishes
To witness music, festivals, junk shops, singing, readings, not to mention art-shows galore
A vibrant pool of creative energy, 'edgy', cobbled together in a very zonal town
Beggars, thieves, drunkards/druggies are thrown into the mix seeking their hopeless wishes...

As for 'mental health' in coastal towns, expressed through poetry alone.
That seems rather niche when so much else (as above), is on offer.

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