Creative Competition 2017 – Poetry Winner

Section: People and NetworksType: News Item Date Published: 1st September 2017
Image with the Caption 'Creative Competition 2017' and the logos of the Health and Social Care Academy, Scottish Recovery Network, Write to Recovery, Reachout with Arts in Mind and Mind Waves.

Health and Social Care Academy announce 2017 Creative Competition winner in the poetry category.

This year was on the theme of ‘change’. We partnered with Scottish Recovery Network, Write To Recovery, Reach out with Arts in Mind and Mind Waves and asked entrants to tell us:

  • What you think needs to change in Scotland to keep you living well?
  • What you do to stay healthy and well?
  • What one thing would you change where you live to keep you well?

Entrants shared their views by submitting to categories of poetry, short story, photography, film and arts and crafts.

The winner of the Creative Competition 2017 Poetry category is:

‘Heard’ by Write to Recovery user Sa_raPreston 

If the illness, the struggle, the fear and the pain,

Were not all trapped inside, but used for others to gain.

So the time and the opportunities missed – were no loss,

If employed as currency, so the next bear no cost.


If I can use my voice – have my experiences told,

So from diagnosis, I’m not just ‘a label’‘like this’ ‘til I’m old.

If I can share my own negatives and turn into good,

Without hesitation – raised hand – I’d stand up and I would.


For this cannot continue – year after year,

A new generation living in fear,

Of the stigma, and the shortage, in services mental,

It’s unjust, not enough – if we’re seen as inconsequential.


But is this a pipe dream? Of a mind ill, unstable, unsound?

No good for board meeting, handover or round?

Is my voice valid, or will I forever be ‘sick?’

Am I tarnished, categorised, in a check-box now ticked?


If I could voice what I’ve been through,

And have you hear, not just listen.

With care, insight and patience,

Where you understand, not dismiss it.


And when I got to the end,

Not speak for me, what you’ve learned.

Instead be a medium and an amplifier,

For my voice to be heard.

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