poetry therapy


NEW! Book Reviews of Resources for Poetry As Healer
Click Here to download PDF

PBS Broadcast of
Healing Words: Poetry & Medicine

Featuring John Fox, John Graham-Pole, MD and the Shands Arts-in-Medicine program, produced by Healing Words Productions.

Click Here to find DVD

View a trailer of the movie

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Community of Poets

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Poetic Medicine in Action
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Interview by Britt Bravo

and the Arts and Healing Network
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Since 1981, I have been passionately committed to helping people discover their healing poet, the one that lives and breathes within each of us. I teach, consult, write and mentor individuals, professional groups and organizations across the globe.

It doesn't matter if you have never written poetry or have written for a long time. If you are new to poetry or just want to deepen your writing practice, this work can support and inspire you.

In early 2005, I formed The Institute for Poetic Medicine, the next manifestation of my life's mission and purpose. We are a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to healing body, mind and spirit through the creative and therapeutic process of hearing and writing poetry. Our vision is to awaken this creative and healing voice in the human spirit. We are collectively dedicated to nurture and strengthen the human capacity to connect to Self, Other, Community, the Natural World and the Divine. On behalf of myself and my Board of Directors, I invite you to experience The Institute for Poetic Medicine:

Listen to presences inside poems.
Let them take you where they will.
Follow those private hints,
And never leave the premises.

Jellaludin Rumi

translated by Coleman Barks and John Moyne

Poems stir us, encourage us to wake, breathe deeply and experience life! Poems are alive. They hold energy. You can discover this life and energy in your words, in the cadence of your voice, and the feeling inside your body upon reading a poem. There are indeed hints inside of poems that become available to you as you write and hear them.

What poems offer relates not only to the present moment, but may come as messengers from the past and clues important for your future messages for you and for humanity. Poetry joins the personal with the universal.

Writing allows us to discover how vulnerabilities and strengths can co-exist, even thrive together. Poems can reveal deep insight and compassion. They can give voice to what is raw and wounded in your life and that honesty, creatively expressed and explored, can bolster and guide you through rough times. Your writing can transform you at profound levels.

"What do I want to say besides thank you?  When I set out for the workshop, I had no idea I would be so completely changed or become so completely myself again because of poetry and you." --Shannon Klassel,   New York, New York


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newsletter archives


The Stones of Memory
A day-long northwest poetic medicine retreat
with John Fox, Marna Hauk, and Peg Edera
Friends Meeting House on Stark
Thursday, November 6, 2014

Please see flyer for information and registration:


Writing Our Relationship with Trees
What This Can Teach Us About Ourselves &
Living Within The Sacred

at Peg Ederaís Summerlin House
Portland Oregon
November 7 - 9, 2014

Please see flyer for information and registration:


At the Bend in the River: Listening as a Catalyst
for Creativity

Speese Conference Center
Childrenís Medical Center at Legacy
Plano, Texas 75024
October 3 & 4, 2014

Please see flyer for information and registration:


Bringing Compassion to Life:
Letting Poetry & the Arts Help Us Get There!

with Rev. Dr. Joan Brown Campbell and John Fox, CPT;
Rev. Roger Osgood, Duffy Liturgical Dancers;
HCC Gospel Singers & Students from Shaker High
October 17 & 19, 2014

Please see flyer for information and registration:


Grand Rounds Presentation Poetic Medicine: The Healing Art of Poem-Making Co-sponsored by the Department of Spiritual Care
and the Arts & Medicine Institute
Noon to 1 p.m.
Bunts Auditorium
Cleveland Clinic Hospital
Cleveland, Ohio
(Bunts Auditorium is in the TT building
off East 90th Street)
October 23, 2014

Please see flyer for information and registration:


At the Bend in the River: Listening as a Catalyst
for Creativity

Christ Episcopal Church
Cleveland Heights, Ohio
October 24 & 25, 2014

Please see flyer for information and registration:

Finding the Words to Say It:
The Renewing Power of Written Expression

An Inclusive Poetry Event — Every Voice Matters!
Sponsored by Cleveland Yachad
Cleveland Heights and University Heights Public Library
Tuesday evening: 7:00 p.m. — 9:00 p.m.
October 28, 2014

For information please call Sarah Ireland-Cooperman
(216) 299-1004.


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