I lie in this bed
with no energy left to burn
no matter how hard I try
there’s just nothing left.

I gaze out the window
as blood is being pumped into my veins
I’m hopeful
as some kind soul
has given me the chance
At feeling normal again.

Pills, water and food
all take a lot of energy
just to swallow
though I know
all will help in the long run.

The hours tick by
as my veins get filled with healthy blood
three hours and the first bag is flowing
among my bodies’ tissue and organs.

Bag two is up
another long three hours
have just begun
as I lay here and watch
blood trickling down the tube.

I hope to feel human again
as new replaces the old
I beg for improvement
but only time can tell.

I watch the blood
as it drips into the river
which flows freely
inside my body.

I soak up my surroundings
the sterile smell
the plain white sheets
people in uniform
all line the corridors.

There are no happy faces here
just the look of concentration and concern
as the unknown of everyone’s situation
spills out among the atmosphere.

Everyone here is aiming for the same target
though reality is, not all will get there.

Copyright  © 2010 Keryn Densem

Keryn Densem is a 22 year old living in Canterbury.  Keryn has been writing for the last seven years as an outlet through her struggles with depression, anxiety and various health problems including the recent diagnosis of a chronic blood condition.  Her main inspiration is her twin brother who fought childhood cancer and now lives with the serious late effects of his illness and the treatments he had to beat it.


Stuck in a Rut

I am stuck in a rut not knowing how to be free.
And no one has done anything personal to me.
In fact everyone else has their journey and I mine.
And I am stuck in this journey, stuck in time.
I understand about anxieties worries and suffering of fears.
I understand about false promises, misunderstandings, who out there cares.
What I don’t understand is how to come free
This overwhelming conditioning coming over me.

I am a prisoner and only I hold the key.
The decisions to freedom hanging over me.
There a thing’s I have no control over where I have no power.
And waiting every second can feel more like every hour.
There are things we can influence and things we just can’t
There are problems that are problems and problems that just arn’t
Most problems we invent welcome anxieties worries and fears.
And the control that fear holds, living in the darkness, living with fears.
And these fears are surrounding heavy foggy, a living dark consuming cloud.
These fears cripple the shadow of the innocent strong and proud.

And I’m struggling, because there is a decision I need to make
And I have not really decided which path I need to take
Until I decide then I can invite the new and let go of the old.
Moving upwards onwards while my life has been on hold.
I have made a choice my decision a glimpse of hope to peace.
Releasing from the struggle, feeling more at home at ease.
Feelings of relief clearer perspectives open and awake.
And Now when I look back at my rut I see a pattern to my mistake.

I see how my emotions lead me down into the gutter.
How I hate my job although it’s my bread and my butter.
No matter what I do or achieve I feel I come last.
Not living in the present always dwelling in the past.
Can you see a pattern of negative thinking.
Focused on what’s wrong, inner strength weakening.
Leading down a spiral path of pain and lots of sorrow .
Not looking forward to the future not looking forward to tomorrow.
And if there is a lesson to be learnt and a lesson to be taught.
There is always a glimpse of hope so focus on that thought.
No matter how much grief or sorrow a rainbow can be caught
Think of the positive’s my friends, because life is just too short.

Copyright © 2010 Michael Joseph Lauese

Michael Lauese was born in New Zealand and is of Samoan/Maori descent.  Michael has been awarded several National and International Body-Building trophy’s for NZ, Pacific Island, and NZ Maori Titles.  Michael lost his partner, house, career and son and in these times of despair, turned to poetry to aid his recovery.

MH 02

By 'Teira Naahi'

Stay sane
No milk today…

Copyright © 2010 Clayton Taylor-Nelson aka Teira Naahi.

Clayton Taylor-Nelson aka Teira Naahi was born in Auckland New Zealand. He is no stranger to Mental Health. Teira was inadvertently institutionalized in an Australian psyche hospital for children, at the age of 8, and released at the age of 14 then returned to NZ on his own. Drawing from multiple art disciplines to find new solutions and expressions for life’s complex situations, Teira has spent over 25 years producing art, music and poetry as a means of exploring and coping with mental health under the banner of “Rewiring The Self Through Art!”.

five silver linings

I get better & better
at building bridges
& finding ways

I am bendy & I have
bricks in me / special tools
for sourcing flecks of light
when they have been hiding.

# 2
we are closer.

your eccentricities
make sense to me.

this zigzag thinking /
my fertile mind
/ all the things
that can live there /
be born
& grown
& koro / curl around
all long-limbed
& magical there.

I feel things
there’s no Tir Na Nog
situation here
I feel things –
the shape
& colour
the glint
of things

some thoughts
are like wind
on my face

today, the street stretches out
villa-lined before me
the Waitakere’s strong arm
holds the horizon
like a lover
in the distance
& I am
moving homeward
I can see

it is sometimes like I have no edges
& everything beautiful
moves right through me.

# 5
is useful

to sew
stand in
when I


to make
for me
to hear
them sing.

Copyright © 2010 Miriam Barr

Miriam Barr is from the Far North and lives in Auckland.  Her poems have been published in Landfall, JAAM, Poetry NZ, Black Mail Press and other places.  She is a performance poet with The Literatti and was creative director of the group for three years (2007-2010).  She works as a mental health promoter for Like Minds, Like Mine and is service director for Engage Aotearoa.

Stormy times

Whenever a storm worry’s me
You’ve been the light I seek
For as long as you’ve loved me
You’ve made my journey complete

Whenever rain clouds emerged
Worry rapidly rises within me
You’re the one who’s understood
When I’ve laid my battles at your feet

Whenever a storm embraces me
You’ve been my beacon of hope
As my battle rages on the outside
On the inside you’ve brought hope

Whenever my storm awakens me
I’ve felt lost inside with nowhere to turn
You’ve given me the willpower
To find my way through any storm

Copyright © 2010, Jude Blance

Jude Blance currently lives in Titahi Bay, New Zealand.  Whenever dark shadows have caused havoc in her personal journey she’s often found refuge in writing poetry, a personal collection of poetry titled My Stormy Weather.  Jewelie often finds sharing her emotions helped release her from her world of darkness.  Her personal storm has been never ending and in times of trouble, she’s found herself despairingly searching for the light within herself.