“Forget How to Die”, fighting against surrender

In this laic homely, the author speaks to the people attending a funeral – the umpteenth. Suicides follow one another, each time in different circumstances: nooses, bullets, cuts… So, this imaginary officiant tells the crowd that we are here riunited to forget how to die and to remember what is there inside us that keeps us going. And makes us declare “I’m ready to wrestle, bring your god and your death. If I lose, don’t you dare lay me to rest. Because my spirit is pissed and he’s fighting next.”

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“Living with bipolar disorder”, questioning yourself and reality

Self-awareness is the first step towards healing and young Kenyan writer Emily K Millern knows it well. She often writes about her mental health struggles and so trasforms an unusual topic for poetry into art, achieving a therapeutic effect for herself and her readers. Sharing personal experiences – as her bipolar disorder – “reminds us that we are not alone, we are part of a bigger fight and we all have a role to play”, as she said. In fact, Emily strongly advocates for raising public awareness on mental health, a subject as sensitive as underestimated and neglected.

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“Bitter sweet” is the skin cut that suffocates the screaming soul

Mental illness can include a variety of symptoms; sometimes self-harm can occur. In a vicious cycle, the individual punishes his/her own body – the shell containing a suffocating inner distress – and takes somehow pleasure in it. In this poem Mercy Bibian describes with brutal honesty the “journey” to self-harm in scenes of cinematographic inspiration. So the reader witnesses the first cut and then the following ones, up to the establishing of an addiction to pain, to blood, to cutting – an act that almost inconceivably provides relief of unbearable thoughts and feelings of anxiety and depression.

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