People across Kent had their favourite things included in a specially commissioned Wellbeing poem with the help of poet Dan Simpson.
For two weeks via social media, residents sent their thoughts and feelings on what aids their wellbeing to Dan, who incorporated them into verse. Whether it was enjoying luscious food like Brie and cranberries, surprise presents, or a brisk walk along the beach with a favourite pet, the suggestions were many and varied.
Dan, who is the current Canterbury Laureate, said: “The Six Ways to Wellbeing crowdsourced poem is made up entirely of words given to me by people in Kent via Twitter. I tweeted out prompts and ideas with the hashtag #wellbeingpoem, and waited to see what would come back from the public. I got beautiful responses and funny ones; some poignant words and evocative thoughts. I took all the words and rearranged them in an order that made sense to me, and created the communal, crowdsourced poem.”
Enjoy reading the poem in full below.
Wellbeing is a purring cat on my lap
whistling for the dog
it’s dancing in the dark to your favourite pop song
spinning with your arms aloft.
It’s pilates and feeling graceful like a dancer
a seeded batch loaf with brie and cranberry
it’s smiling quietly or roaring with laughter
it’s a steaming mug of tea.
It’s coastal walks in any weather
under the huge sky
it’s that long linear horizon; a strong sea breeze
it’s finding delightful surprises.
It’s bubble-wrapping an absent colleague’s desk
finding fun in the mundane
it’s building a boat by night
it’s not caring about the rain.
It’s learning boogie-woogie piano to fend off dementia
(making music for the mind)
it’s hard-to-keep-secret gifts
it’s eating lots of chocolate
it’s tiny acts of being kind.
It’s trainers on, get set, go
drawing deep lungfuls of invigorating air
it’s something simple – like dry socks
it’s that book you have share.
It’s the important people
the leaves turning from green to gold
it’s creating colourful memories
it’s knowing: you can change misdeeds of old.
It’s living in the moment
never checking your phone
it’s glittering sunsets
getting lost in ice cream cones.
It’s being joined in a garden ramble by a bumble bee
it’s giving up lattes and starting deep breathing
it’s feeling connected with your body
since it may be windy outside – but in my heart it’s swing.
Find out more about Dan on his website.