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Home Explore Creativity Unlocked 2020

Creativity Unlocked 2020

Published by holly, 2020-08-03 06:55:23

Description: This collection of poetry was written by the participants of Severn Art’s ‘Inspiring Futures through the Arts’ programme, as a result of a series of workshops run by Giovanni ‘Spoz’ Esposito and Holly Daffurn . The project was devised as a way of using art and therapeutic writing to empower people in the criminal justice system to turn their lives around. Severn Arts very much wish to thank the project funder, the West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner and the workshops host and partner, Warwickshire and West Mercia Community Rehabilitation Company.

Keywords: poetry,rehabilitation,therapeutic writing,probation,Worcestershire,arts in Worcester


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The Great Unidentified Metal Object by D.O As we walked around to the back of his car, we both checked up and down the street. It was deserted. The rows of parked cars... the empty streets... the general lack of movement... the stillness in the air all belied an air of calm, yet there was an uneasiness. A feeling of being watched. I felt like prey being stalked by the predator. He opened the boot and lifted it. The interior lights came on revealing a chaotic scene, illuminating the clothes and rubbish strewn filled boot space. I searched for what I was looking for and my eyes fell upon a tatty, dog-eared shoe box. He reached into the boot and brought the box closer to the edge. I glanced up and down the street again; still deserted. The silence was unnerving ... I still had the feeling we were being watched, but from where? Desperately, I strained my eyes, expecting to see a face in one of the windows, or a curtain twitching, but nothing. Not a stray cat, not even an empty packet of crisps being buffeted along by the wind. This place was dead. The silence felt deafening ... something wasn’t right ... I could feel it in my bones. CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020 51

We agreed the road was deserted and so our attention fell back to the box within the boot. He asked if I was ready. Ready? I’d never been more ready in my life... or so i felt, as he lifted the lid of the cardboard box and it flopped backwards onto the pile of old clothes. Something inside the box caught the light and glinted, reflecting rays of pure silver onto my face, as though in a film when they look into a chest of gold and the light seems to radiate from the depths of the chest. He told to me reach in and take it. Feel the power. With this in your hand, you are mightier than any man with a sword. As I reached into the box, my fingers closed around its metal casing. The cold of its touch making me instinctively draw my hand back... but I reached in a second time and grasping its cold metal form tightly, I drew it out, holding it at eye level, examining the metal body for a makers mark and serial number. I field stripped it in order to check its cleanliness and work-ability. I noticed how battered and worn the metal casing was, offering an individual patina to the aged object, the marks and scuffs indicating heavy use and a hard life, but in mind symbolising its usefulness to those previous owners. Its ability to be wielded in times of need. If it wasn’t reliable and didn’t work, it wouldn’t have shown so many signs of use. The surface damage, the scratches, scuffs and pitting along its cold metal body. 52 CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020

I had already decided it was exactly what I had been looking for and told him that I would take it... just simply a matter of price. I paid him the agreed price and as he placed the stack of folded notes into his jeans pocket, I slid my new-found defence into my inside coat pocket and headed off down the street. The heavy weight pressing on my chest mad me feel unstoppable - invincible - protected - defended. This simple metal object became my new stone walls and ramparts around the castle of my mind, and now I felt safe. As I walked through the city back to my own estate, I felt ready to react to every man that tried to stare me out. If only they knew what I had in my coat. If only they knew the power I held. This new metal object made me feel like a God. Omnipotent. I mean, I’d always felt separate from the rest of humanity, but now I felt special. Elevated above the rest. I got home and pushed the key into the door. Greeted my dog, as every other day before, except this was different. I rushed into the living room, emptied my pockets and threw my coat over the chair. I placed my new item on the coffee table - its glittering form entrancing me. My mind began to wonder... whirring thoughts sped through my head... images filled my mind’s eye. Where should I start? How should I begin? What would be my first move? What should be my first move? How can I change the world now that I have my own pen? CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020 53

Anger Poetry and Words by J.S. What a way to get stress out/ no need for fighting no need to shout thought I knew all the answers /tell you off or knock you out then a fella named Spoz told me what it’s about we all get mad from time to time /but it’s when you know to draw the line the world/the women/the morons we meet/it’s all about the way we treat the words we use /control the heat/don’t take the morons off their feet/ I thought I had anger issues but now I know it’s peed off-ness from all the crap and rubbish folks talk /an’ all the world’s strife an’ stress but now I know because of Spoz that words and rhythms help the noz It’s getting to the stage I like this course /it makes a change from all the news and to hear the hate it’s a crying shame but saying that it’s also true that sometimes you have to do the things you do family friends and happy folk/for all the rest hey... fuck you 54 CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020

Forgiveness by W.W. Forgiveness isn’t an act which happens in a day, it takes time for painful memories to fade and go away. Spiteful words and unkind acts I try hard to forget, I carry such resentment from the people I have met. In the past I’ve lost my temper been angry and deranged, and although I’m full of anger I believe I’ve nearly changed. For I used to trash possessions and stamp and scream and bite, I would start my night intoxicated and would end it with a fight. CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020 55

I really didn’t appreciate being told what I should do, for you don’t know how you would react with the same things done to you. Fuelled by rage and heartbreak I ignored all I was told, I’d seek revenge for satisfaction I was bitter, mean and cold. It took time for me to realise that all people aren’t the same, to drop the heartless female act and to be myself again. I have love for all the people who were there for me and kind, helped me fix my broken pieces when I snapped and lost my mind. 56 CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020

It’s not always forgiving but forgetting over time, feeling less and less each day until one day you feel fine. Letting go of words unsaid and to instead save your breath, walking past the ones who hurt you when you used to wish them death. Let go of all the bitterness, from the hard times you’ve been through, for if you can find forgiveness, you can concentrate on you. Not every day will be easy but it used to feel like hell, so be thankful that you’re getting there and can start to just do well. CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020 57

Homeless by N.C. I’m homeless... I live in a tent on the Malvern Hills! Late at night hearing the wind against my tent, Feelings while I’m sleeping, thinking someone’s gunna hurt me. You don’t think about these things until you’re in that situation. But today... Wednesday 27th November... I had a meeting at St. Paul’s... ...and got accepted! You should see the smile on my face! After all the refusals... I got accepted! The feeling of being accepted! It felt amazing! I’ll soon be sleeping in a bed instead of a tent! Christmas come early for this crazy young man! I really can’t wait to meet new people. New home... new start... that I want to make the most of. And I will make the most of it when I move to St. Paul’s. I’m finding it hard to describe how I really feel in words. I’m waiting and wanting time to fly by... Roll on that day I move out of the tent and into a bed that I’ve missed so long. The feeling’s incredible. But in my heart and soul, the feeling’s so strong... so powerful. 58 CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020

I wish I could describe the powerful feelings that changed from just 30 minutes ago... It’s crazy how life can change so quick. In my manor, I think I’m going to build a bridge... ...and I will get over it. Thinking that, does a lot. It makes you think more positively about life. Some people are in a much worse position. In life, it’s about being mentally strong and positive. CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020 59


You Call This What? by J.M. Why are u here really? Why are u here really? I reckon u here really... I reckon you’re just reporting back to ur boss. C... I been watching you “C I been watching you.” Really? U done watching you really? U done this before, I reckon... U just done this before I reckon. Listen and watched. I bet you’re on falsebook and u got thousands of friends u never met yeah? Probably just a handful of real friends. U call me this, u call me that, u call this u do. What am I to think about all this? Now let me help as it seems to me u can’t decide. Or shall I hang on while u call me more? CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020 61

Recipe for Forgiveness by S.J. I was cooking in the kitchen, stirring up the pot. Before you phoned I was busy, so stop being silly, I’d got my feet up relaxing drinking a cuppa tea. Why bellow out all your problems to me? You’ve disrupted my day - what’s so important you want to say? What makes you so important to listen to? When asked if I knew your name, I’d reply, who? Yes okay, first ingredient, grab a pinch of salt, I never meant it to be an insult. I was cooking in the kitchen stirring up the pot. Your shouting makes me jump, In my throat I’ve got a clump. You’re meant to have been happy, glad of what you did, But instead you ran off and hid. I presume you got embarrassed, stayed away and got shy, Well thanks a lot I hope it was worth it, you made me want to die. After three kids, four houses, all you could do is lie, So, I add a spoon of compassion, a drop of truth. I was cooking in the kitchen stirring up the pot. The day you never attended the park, Out with your mates just having a lark. The truth of you, you just kept me in the dark. 62 CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020

That’s it all in one day my light was taken away, I had to stop and stand to pray, I thought that you wanted me - close and near- that by my side you really wanted to stay. Since that day I’ve had a caving in roof, I add a cup of ‘second chance’, I’m ready to give you a glance. I was cooking in the kitchen stirring up the pot. You’re asking to get let back in - it’s not too hard - you were under my skin. I know forgiveness is what you’re asking, memories of you I’m already basking. Forgiveness works both ways. You can tell me what it is that I done wrong, My love for you was oh so very strong. I’m true to my word, my love is everlasting, all bad overcasting. The final ladle of ‘warmth from the heart’ a second chance is sure to start. I was cooking in the kitchen stirring up the pot. CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020 63

Letter to Ten Year Old Nick by N.C. I am writing to you to think about things before you do in trouble wise. You know about you smashing your dad’s pigeon loft up. It wasn’t the thing you should have done to your father’s shed! You should respect your father’s things that he works hard for. But you get yourself all worked up and break stuff. Doors to... anything! The tempers you get in! Rules and laws are there for a reason. You will start smoking weed hanging around with lads who are much older. That will get you into trouble with the police as well others. By the time you get to 13 you will be in a secure unit... Rainsbrook, in Rugby. You should have kept to playing your football. The crowd you was hanging around with then. Being the young, good person you were... manners... never putting a foot out place. You don’t realise at the time the things and how it affects your future in the long run. But all that happens for a reason. You think about where you went wrong. 64 CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020

Insisted on finding little excuses and blaming that for your behaviour and why it went like it did. As you get older you will realise the mistakes and how they affect life later on... When younger and stupid! My point is to think properly and carefully before doing anything. Because consequences do catch up on us and haunt us for a very long time. You get forgiven but they don’t let you forget that mistake or mistakes. Best way to be in life is a good honest man... that’s what pays off. Working hard... being able to provide support. That’s what people look for. CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020 65

Daughter by S.J. This morning I don’t feel the same I want to see my dad and play the shopping game Brush my teeth and wash my hands Getting up in the morning just doesn’t seem the same I’m looking to the floor crawling rather than walking My tone has changed when I’m talking I’m wondering why a lot so I play with all my toys For a week now I haven’t seen my dad I’m pretty sure that I’ve never been so sad I’m looking and searching asking if anyone can take me to see my dad Being left with who I’ve got around me makes me frustrated Time without him I’ve always hated What have I done to deserve this sudden change of surroundings? I listen to the radio and improve when the shotgun song sings Mom’s new boyfriend is so tall great big dangly arms ‘n legs he looks worse than a hairy spider He pushes and shouts and always scares me I’m now searching for where a safer place could be I play with my dolls we have a tea party Daddy says use your brain and be a smarty I just know that I want some time alone from these so called adults They keep on hurting me with the loud screaming insults I sit in the quiet waiting patiently, praying for my daddy’s return These people around me I just don’t like 66 CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020

I’d rather shout at them to go out on their bike These people are only happy when my stomachs about to churn Everywhere I go I mean all my mom’s mates places I have seen so many different faces I just want to be at home In my comfort zone When I see my dad I just know it will be a Saturday We have spoken in our dreams and together we pray Today is just another day I want to see my dad I’m sorry my only daughter that I had to leave I pray every day that I could see you every day not just a Saturday I had to leave because your mom had told me to otherwise you would hear us both argue I ask myself the same question about why I had to leave trust me I just don’t have a clue I’d never want to shout and argue in-front of you You see I wouldn’t have let you go out with your mom to her friends Their all fake smiles and play games by showing friendship just as a way to play pretends I wanted you to be safe and away from all the bad So that you can grow and blossom I know that you are a natural mom CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020 67

Together we share the same pain and being without you always makes me cry I pray that one day we will see eye to eye For sure I never wanted you to be in a bad situation or get a scary feeling My time away from you makes me want to be hanging from the ceiling Yet I won’t ever do it all I want is to finally get through it When you told me about all the people being horrible to you I felt really bad Getting you safe was my priority as I’m your only dad Together we could look back on this and you feel glad The last time I saw you I won’t ever forget We all went to the cinema together to watch the Lion King We liked to hear the final song then we would happily sing That song will be true, it’s never too late I tried to keep you honestly I did But we couldn’t do what you wanted And run away to hide from you being took away I needed people’s support to keep you by my side Trust in the professionals Some day they could be called the sensational Well, you can trust me when I say‘I never wanted you to stay away’ I’ve ruined my own life to save yours So that you could be safe and kept within good doors I will always pray that I will see you again someday 68 CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020

The people who were around you were all so deceitful Trust me looking back on that day I delivered you from all evil That doesn’t include me, with me there isn’t a safer place you could be You’re my baby girl my one I’d protect the most You know that I won’t ever hurt you lie or lead you astray Did I say that I pray to see you again someday? I dress you so pretty you show off a princess twirl You are my baby girl Here I am in this mean old town and you’re so far away from me May peace be with you, a life of harmony light your way I’ve always carried in my heart every day Hoping to see you again From when you were in mommy’s womb I have always loved you You are my only daughter , I’m just so glad that I saved you from evil or being in an unruly place You’re so precious kind and miniature I’m so proud to have called you my daughter Hand in hand we walk in the paradise park playing on the swings having a lark CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020 69



Lost I lost my youth Like a toddler loses a tooth My past is angry As there was never a sorry But now I have an idea of the truth Things were dire when I set a fire The flames were dwindling Due to lack of kindling The court was understanding But still I went off to prison I knew I had done wrong But I knew his time would come Tears cried every night I tried to be brave with all my might One day I found a quote Such volumes it did speak The doors may lock But the clock never stops 72 CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020

Feelings You are not your feelings They are just what you experience Anger, sadness, fear, hate, depression. This is the rain that you walk in – but you don’t become the rain You know the rain will pass… so you walk on And you remember the soft glow of the sun, that will surely come again and grace your soul CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020 73

Loss I’ve lost a lot in my life, my childhood, my innocence, my parents and many a time my will to live. The one that hurts my very core though has nothing to do with terrible acts against me or a family without compassion or love. It’s the one event that came much later than childhood innocence being lost over which I had no control. The day I lost my children to a system that didn’t understand I could love and protect my children despite my diagnosis. The love I radiated to my children, the joy I took in all their stages they choose to ignore. The system that at the time (15 years to be exact) didn’t support mums with bpd and suicidal ideations. The system that told me I should hand over custody of my children to their father or risk them being put into care. The day where I was recovering in hospital after hurting myself, upon hearing this ultimatum and a man in a suit approached the nurse looking after me and asked for me by my name. I said yes and he handed me a brown envelope and the departing words of “you have been served”. Was like feeling what little was left of my heart splintering into thousands of pieces scarring every part of me as it happened… which have never recovered fully since. 74 CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020

There sat in front of me was the court paperwork which changed the trajectory of my life. The children’s father wanted full custody and no contact rights for me, directly or indirectly. I lived for my children; I wanted a better life for them than I ever had. Forget the abuse, the domestic violence…these I could bear in comparison to losing my children. Many a times I have sobbed till I can’t breathe as my partner has held me, many a times I have been physically sick from the pain. This is a pain I struggle to describe. This is a moment I will never forget. This was by far the biggest loss in my life and I still fight against a system and a controlling ex-partner each and every day for my children, because I will never turn my back on the beautiful souls I birthed into this world and love beyond words. (PS I now had regular contact and the children make my heart soar regularly by sharing their love towards me despite their father’s attempts to tear them away) CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020 75

Why Me? Because I was too quiet? NO Because I’m too outspoken? NO Because I’m a bad person? NO Because I’m stupid? NO Because I’m annoying? NO Because I did something to deserve it? NO Because I provoked them? NO Because I wore the wrong outfit? NO Because I was a hard child? NO Because I “froze” ? NO Because I’m naive? NO Because I’m a people pleaser? NO Because I fell for it? NO Because I’m needy? NO Because I’m a bad person? NO Because I ignored the red flags? NO Because an abuser chose to abuse…? YES 76 CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020

The Abused Child and The Adult Repercussions A person starts and ends their day seeking validation, searching for who they are. They have no idea of the person they were before; they have no idea of what they would have become without trauma impacting them daily. The child who hid from the fights. The child who grew up petrified of the ones who should love her unconditionally. The child who was beat regularly for no reason, for the fact she was present and the loud screaming piercing her little ears. The child who was forced to sniff her sheets after an accident that was a result of the abuse and she had no control over. Is now an adult who flinches when a hand is raised Is now an adult who can’t sit with her back to people in a public setting for fear of not knowing what would come. Is now an adult who hates arguments even if they don’t involve her and will do everything to keep the peace. Is now an adult that has constant paranoia that she carries an odour no matter how much she scrubs clean. This person is me. I’ve had to relearn what actual love is, I’ve had to grow, for- give and come to terms with the fact I will never know who I was before… But I can be the person I’m proud of today. THIS PERSON IS ME. CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020 77


ROSA McCARTHY Writer, artist, performer and professional daydreamer from Great Malvern, Worcestershire. Besotted with walks on the Malvern Hills, and Victoria sponge cake. Fair condition vintage item, slight wear and tear, well- travelled. Life is a theatre so let us all play our parts with joy and laughter while the show rolls on. Or light the fire, pour the wine, it’s a travelling show, come join the fun... Smile. Laugh. Applaud. With great thanks to Holly Daffurn and this project for giving me the encouragement, foundations and vision to take my dreams forward. I am currently working on my own autobiography and I continue to write poetry. If we have nothing to wear then wear only a smile. Rosa xx CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020 79

Forgiveness Forgive me Mistress For I have sinned Strip me naked Keep me pinned For I’ll endure Such punishment due With cruellest hand Just all for you So, take this beast From lowly place And scratch my itch Of bitter taste Like gift presented Smooth soft white skin To administer your Harsh discipline And whilst I beg For mercy please A broken male Down on my knees I kiss your shoe And whimper slight Your darkest pleasure My sheer delight 80 CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020

Blessed My precious I will hold you Rock with you gently Shelter with you from the storm Holding unconditional love I will give you my last breath My first breath My only breath Our spirits are entwined Bonded Like soil and deep roots You are the breeze and I the bird Dear Mother Earth for the beauty of every waking moment I am blessed CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020 81

Countdown to 80 There are only 38 years left 28 sane 18 at best Express what’s inside What drives What hides you Stop telling lies Stand proud Just be you Don’t be afraid To spit in the face At angry slander Of the human race Greedy pigs Consumerist rights Judicial systems That destruct our flights Keep in line The queue at the store Work longer Live less Consume Consume more 82 CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020

Chew the plastic and swallow the smile Pick up your paycheck and complete your mile There’s another car sitting on your tiny drive It’s another suburban one track ride There’s 38 years at a push to go 28 thinking 18 to flow It’s time to stop caring and sink deep within My own little tunnel That bubble of sin Express Speak up Create Share Join the cause, while it’s free and it’s there The clock is ticking My bones growing old Burst that bubble Let passions unfold Colours flow with furious pace Cos there’s 38 years and I just joined the race CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020 83

Fish I wondered if there had been a fish in my bed If there had been a fish in my bed I wondered which side he had slept Or maybe just in the middle. I knew that there had been a fish in my bed because when I rolled over a bright blue button had stuck to my arm. It was the same bright blue button as those in his smart tweed waistcoat. I just wondered if fish often slept in his waistcoat or if he had just been particularly tired that night. I put the button aside in case he returned another night. I figured he must be a little upset that his waistcoat felt incomplete. The button stayed there the next night, and also the night after that. In fact, for a whole week before he returned. I didn’t see him I just knew he’d taken it and slept in my bed again. He always folds the sheet over the top of the duvet after he’s now slept in my bed. I guess it’s a way of saying he’s been there. 84 CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020

The rest of the summer passed and the sheet stayed unfolded on my duvet. I figured he might never return. Maybe he’d just be a fleeting visitor like a bird before migration or a horse on its way to a show. The nights grew short and the early evenings dark. I sat by the fire in the silence and listened to the owls calling outside. The first frost would soon come and I was preparing the house for winter. Then in the silence came a sharp tap tapping at the door. It was fish. Stood smartly in his tweed waistcoat. We exchanged polite conversation and soon he was in my bed asleep. It was then that I first realised fish snored. He also occasionally muttered in his sleep which I found most unusual for such a gentile fellow. The fire cracked and spat onto the rug, the flames danced with excited colours of red, orange and yellow. My face felt warm and I settled on the sofa with a heavy crochet blanket. Soon I too was asleep. CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020 85

When I woke fish was gone. There was a very new looking five pound note sitting neatly on the side table and the sheet was once again neatly folded over the duvet. I wondered who fish really was and where he had been all season. I hoped one day we might get to know one another better. The morning sun was low as I chopped wood for the fire. The axe flashed silver as it fell hard into the wood. A similar silver to that of fish. 86 CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020

Optimism I woke up today The storm had passed I was no longer lost I saw a thousand new colours and heard a thousand new noises I was in the same place It was the same time It was the same smell The only thing that had changed was my thinking And I thought... “Good morning beautiful world”. CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020 87

Heal You can hold me down And make me cry Clip my wings and leave me shivering Yet the strength of pain I feel is yours The spreading disease of your unhappiness I will heal I will move on Disillusion It is not the fear of drowning in bleeding sorrow But the deafening silence between crashing sea waves The inhale The rising wave The realisation Of rise to the fall Engulf my bitter heart with poisoned love Take my hand with cold uncomfortable affection I stand grateful For the something Rather than the nothing Even black shines purple when there is hope 88 CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020

Ringing In My Ears I am more deafened by the silence Following the yelling It is then the words sound the loudest Freedom You gave me a castle To save me Its walls high And drapes fine But I could never be its princess The beauty I possess Is that in having nothing I shall forever wear the riches of freedom Stone Give me a stone I will make you a path Give me a stone I build you a house Give me a stone I will strike you dead Love decides CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020 89

Exposed Poverty made me vulnerable Privacy became unobtainable Suddenly I was the possession of everyone who wished to help me I was exposed I felt naked My only privacy were the thoughts in my own mind And then here I am sharing them Believe Actually... YES I can. 90 CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020

Unworthy It is the thankfulness The affection The moments of heartfelt laughter That scare me the most It’s not my fear of reciprocation But the one I can’t shake In my sanctuary of loneliness True affection blisters my skin like contagious disease From outer beauty I writhe like a wounded beast Amongst ivy I hide Deep in woodland shadow Until once again I feel safe in the silence of nature’s solitude CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020 91

Glass Clouds Fly with me fly with me She called across the meadow I cannot reach you I cried You are too far away Reach up she echoed But I tried already, I said Then she was gone in the breeze Taken from me My heart was stolen And my soul shattered into a thousand sharp pieces all around I am alone now in this windy place No one is here but me I felt despair I felt fear Then I felt her Right behind me Right next to me All over me 92 CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020

Falling on top of me like a hundred glass wishes I am safe Because I know you are with me I am safe because I know we are free CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020 93

Smeared Glass Sometimes I am as strong as steel Like golden silk on a well-crafted web A guiding light on a coastal hilltop No blink of fault Then in the glorious ray of sunshine Starts a tap tapping on the glass walls that house me Tiny cracks awake hidden memory Glass smeared with salty tears Warm fingermarks Pools of shame Shallow sea over clustered pebbles Weakness washes ashore A taste of metallic emptiness fills my throat Painfully I swallow Dizzy The stench of dirty locked rooms Childhood terror Despair Entrapment True fear 94 CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020

Nightmares bubble up like burnt milk In a hot heavy pan The black reoccurs A repulsive tar like drying blood My car is at the clifftop again Its 4am that rainy Winter’s night I am inside Silence Poisonous, silence Venomous thought Tears do not fill cracks Nails claw desperately inside a smooth glass dome No escape My heartbeat pulses Echoes high in the arches Raw The innocence of tears Suspended in evil fantasy Black memory waits CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020 95

Friendship Tell me a story or whisper a word Of a thousand secrets or a secret bird A song that is sung in a lighted ray Or a dance that is kept for a secret day Hold out your hands but rest your head On my dreams of laughter where hope lies ahead The land is long and the world so bold Let us share and smile let friendship unfold But never a tear or a spark of sad Let luck be your foley and charm be your bag For when the sun shines bright and the moons falls dark We will hold on the stars and dance with our hearts 96 CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020


Creativity Unlocked is a collection of poems on themes surrounding forgiveness, self-worth, freedom and much more. These pieces were written by the participants of Severn Arts’ ‘Inspiring Futures through the Arts’ programme. The spoken word and poetry workshops of the programme were facilitated by Giovanni ‘Spoz’ Esposito and Holly Daffurn. The project was funded by the West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner, and devised as a way of using art and therapeutic writing to empower people in the criminal justice system to turn their lives around. Cover illustration by Rosa McCarthy 98 CREATIVITY UNLOCKED 2020

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