Muted shades…

Ahead of White Ribbon Day 2023, we held ‘Writing into Recovery’ poetry workshops as part of our Wellbeing Service with women. The classes focused on writing poetry as a path towards ownership, discovery and transformation led by poet Penny Hughes, using this year’s White Ribbon Day theme, #ChangeTheStory. The poems featured in a trail around Stapleford to mark White Ribbon Day.

This poem was written by participant, Susanna.


Muted shades
of soft blossom in Spring.
A frail petal displaced
by a cruel, rough wind.

Curled up tight in a foetal fold,
An infant in the gaze,
Of a “grown up”, tall and strong,
Ruling my short-lived days.

Watch! Hidden thorns I possess,
Glistening, deadly in the dark.
Bright blinding light of fire
Burning steady and strong,
in a silent unyielding ark.

Those dull, dumb shades and shadows –
They jostle next to bold splashes of bright,
Unapologetic colour and flashes
That see me through the night.

Beware the terrible beauty of the flame and spikes,
Carnivorous in their aim,
Wild at their heart and core.
Spirit is their name.