There is always Paper and a Pen.

“If there is no one to turn to, remember there is always paper and a pen”

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These articles were written and submitted by young people across Kent, between August 2016 and July 2019. We are no longer adding new articles or maintaining old ones. Read more about Art31.

For the purpose of this blog I would like you to be aware this story has been told in confidence and their name has been changed for sharing purposes. Thank you.



“When you can’t take any more
When you feel your life is over
Put down your tablets and
Pick up your pen and
I’ll put you together again”

– Hot Chocolate, I’ll put you together again.

These beautiful words repeated in my mind over and over during my conversation with Micky as for her, a pen really was and continues to be her forever friend that has helped fix her again.

Micky started writing poetry at the age of 6, with a warm smile, yet watering eyes she began to tell me something saddening that happened to her, she really found herself lost and unable to talk to anyone. In this loneliness, Micky felt that there really was nobody that wanted to listen. One day she found herself scribbling thoughts, those thoughts turned into poems.  Micky’s mind would repeat thoughts over and over until she put them onto paper. Poetry became her second nature, whenever she felt unsettling thoughts of disappointment, pain or loneliness she would crave a way to release of them, poetry gave her that release.

“Poetry came to me”,  Micky strongly feels that she did not discover poetry or learn about it, it just came to her that day. Whether it was her passion for literacy and writing that inspired her she felt this love for writing and learned something very important within herself.

“It, for me, is a subconscious way of understanding my thoughts and feelings”.

Micky went on to explain that when she had finished writing a poem she would read back and understand her thoughts and feelings better, which then allowed her to move on from that pain or emotion that she was dealing with. Poetry helped her cope, and for her, it no longer mattered whether anyone was listening or not because she could engage and feel heard through her own words. These thoughts would no longer be locked up and trapped inside her mind. Instead, they were free.

Micky informs me that she has not written a heartfelt poem since she has been married, this is because she feels she has found her happiness. When I asked Micky if she had ever shared or published any of her poems, she told me a few reasons as to why she hasn’t,  “My poetry is personal to me, it really is not for everyone. My inner feelings and emotional states bring out the poetry in me. They are mine and that is my escape.”

I believe that there lays the beauty of poetry, poetry is not just for rhyming words, publishing and performing. In fact, poetry can heal and support people emotionally throughout their life. It can provide a warming and comforting release that becomes a security to the writer and personal to the individual.

As our conversation came to an end I gathered my belongings, Micky looked up at me and said,

“If there is no one to turn to, remember there is always paper and a pen”

Jemma Burgess

Guest Contributor

My name is Jemma Burgess, I am a Theatre Maker. At the moment I am working on several projects, Firstly, I am an Artistic Assistant for an early - years theatre performance. Alongside this, I am volunteering with the Gulbenkian's youth theatre and participating in writing articles based on arts and the mental health. I am situated in Canterbury, Kent where I am also a member of the Rough Cut Collective, a community of emerging artists who, through creating work together and in partnership with Wise Words, develop the skills, experience, networks, and opportunities that give us the tools to shape not only our own careers but ultimately the wider cultural scene here in Kent. Last, but by no means least, I am working on an independent project to create my own children’s theatre production that I will be releasing in May 2019 at the Wise Words Festival.