#MentalHealthAwarenessWeek. 10th-16th May. Day four. This years theme is Nature. How has nature helped your, or other folks mental health? Have you made artworks or written unpublished/published work about it? Please DM me, or send a message via my WordPress site. The week: Monday: Find nature wherever you are. Tuesday: Using all your senses connect with nature. Wednesday: Get out into nature. Thursday: Bring nature to you. Friday: Exercise in nature. Saturday: Combine nature with creativity. Sunday: Protect Nature.

Day four. Bring nature to you.

Mental Health Awareness 2021 poster

(Originally published in Southlight)

She’s building a tower

One stone for every day
she is ok. This one
is from a loch.

She reached into cold water
and took it home,
the first, her chosen

foundation. It sparkles
darkly. The second
came from a hill.

Under uprooted Ash,
between exposed roots
that fed still-living tree,

broad, flat, and coloured
earth. Her third
a broken, river-rounded

section of tile, taken
from a garden.
Terracotta, pitted

yet smooth to feel
when held against cheek.
Next, reddish slate

from a shore below castle,
slipped from turret above,
part of the roof.

Its fall shaped it
into a heart
that echoes her own

romantic notions. One day
she will find a stone
belonging to the sky,

it will be blue. Or white.
Her tower will be done.
She will rest.

-Maxine Rose Munro


You can’t plan it. Get out. Breathe. It makes sense.
I fetched in wild as postcard from nature.
greetings and wish you were here. Some intense
rock from a Wombwell charity shop shares

space with unpainted pine furniture, grain
and knots need to be seen, to lose myself
in swirls, still rivers whose eddies are tamed
in these marble bookends split whole length

reveals metamorphic designs pressured
heated limestone packed with coloured crystals
formed from impurities. Beauty impured.
I am not pure. Who split me ogles.

When nature is a mirror I avoid,
I take a look, see myself in the void.

-Paul Brookes

Bios and Links

-Jane Rosenberg LaForge

writes poetry, fiction, and occasional essays from her home in New York. She has published four chapbooks of poetry and three full-length collections, the most recent being MEDUSA’S DAUGHTER from Animal Heart Press. Her novel, SISTERHOOD OF THE INFAMOUS from New Meridian Arts Press, was inspired by the life of her sister, a one-time punk rocker and prodigy in mathematics. She also is the author of the novel, THE HAWKMAN: A FAIRY TALE OF THE GREAT WAR (Amberjack Publishing 2018) and an experimental memoir,  AN UNSUITABLE PRINCESS (Jaded Ibis Press 2014). More information is at jane-rosenberg-laforge.com 

-Jo Fearon

Is Public Sector Administrator and hobby poet. Second of Ian McMillan’s guest Hear My Voice Sonnets on You Tube. Soon to be published in HMV Barnsley 2020 competition anthology.  Passionate about live music especially rock/blues/punk. Aiming to devote more time to what I love. Rediscovered love of writing the past 2 years.

-Maxine Rose Munro

writes in English and her native Shetlandic Scots. She is widely published in the UK and beyond, both in print and online. She runs First Steps in Poetry, which offers feedback to beginner poets. More here http://www.maxinerosemunro.com

Kathryn Southworth was born in Blackpool, Lancashire, and now lives in Camden Town, London and Prinknash, Gloucestershire.  She is married with three surviving children and three grandchildren.

She has always written poetry but returned to it in earnest only after a long career as an academic in midlands universities. She was a founding fellow of the English Association, Head of English and Cultural Studies at the University of Wolverhampton and held senior management posts there and at Newman University and also worked for the Quality Assurance Agency. She has been a governor of the Camden and Islington Mental Health Trust and is currently a governor of Rose Bruford College of Drama and Theatre Arts.

She has published poetry and reviews in several magazines and anthologies and reads at a number of London poetry venues, including the Poetry Café and Torriano Meeting House. The literary canon informs her writing, as does her Catholic faith, surreptitiously.

-Dr Sara Louise Wheeler

has Waardenburg Syndrome Type 1, a genetic condition which affects her physical appearance as well as her hearing. She writes the column ‘O’r gororau’ (from the borders) for Barddas Welsh poetry magazine and her poetry, belles lettres and artwork has been published by Unique Poetry Journal, Dark Poets Club, Fahmidan Journal, Cloverleaf Zine, and 3am Magazine. Sara is currently writing an autobiographical bildungsroman opera called The Silver Princess, funded by Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru. Originally from Wrecsam in North East Wales, she now lives on the Wirral peninsula with her husband Peter and their pet tortoise Kahless

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